Liverpool F.C. in international football
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Liverpool Football Club Liverpool Football Club is a professional Association football, football club in Liverpool, England, that competes in the Premier League, the top tier of English football league system, English football. Domestically, the club has won nineteen ...
is a professional
association football Association football, more commonly known as simply football or soccer, is a played with a between two teams of 11 . It is played by approximately 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most ...
club in
Union of European Football Associations The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA; ; french: Union Européenne de Football Association; german: Vereinigung Europäischer Fußballverbände) is the administrative body for football, futsal and beach soccer in Europe. It is one ...

Union of European Football Associations
(UEFA) competitions. Since 1964, they have won fourteen European and Worldwide trophies, more than any other British club. These consist of the
UEFA Champions League The UEFA Champions League (abbreviated as UCL) is an annual club Association football, football competition organised by the UEFA, Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) and contested by List of top-division football clubs in UEFA count ...
(formerly known as the European Cup) six times, the
UEFA Europa League The UEFA Europa League (abbreviated as UEL) is an annual football Football is a family of team sport A team is a roup (disambiguation), group of individuals (human or non-human) working together to achieve their goal. As defined by P ...
(formerly the UEFA Cup) three times, the UEFA Super Cup four times, and the FIFA Club World Cup once. Qualification for European competitions is determined by a team's success in its domestic league and cup competitions from the previous season. Liverpool competed in European competitions for 21 consecutive seasons until the 1985 European Cup Final, the occasion of the Heysel Stadium disaster, following which the club was banned from European competitions for six seasons. Since being readmitted in 1991, they have qualified for the UEFA Champions League (the successor to the European Cup) thirteen times, the UEFA Europa League (the successor to the UEFA Cup) twelve times, and the (now-defunct) UEFA Cup Winners Cup twice. As a result of their victory in the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final, Liverpool won the European Champion Clubs' Cup trophy outright and were awarded a European Champion Clubs' Cup#Multiple-winner badge, multiple winner badge. Only 2 teams have won more Champions Leagues than Liverpool – Real Madrid CF, Real Madrid and A.C. Milan with 13 and 7 respectively. Liverpool's total of three UEFA Cup wins has been bettered only by Sevilla FC, Sevilla, who have won the competition six times. They have also won the UEFA Super Cup on four occasions; only FC Barcelona, Barcelona and Milan (with 5 each) have won the competition more. Liverpool won the FIFA Club World Cup for the first time in 2019. Bob Paisley is the club's most successful manager in Europe, with five trophies. Liverpool's biggest-margin win in Europe is an 11–0 victory over Strømsgodset IF, Strømsgodset in the 1974–75 European Cup Winners' Cup. In European competitions, Jamie Carragher holds the club record for the most appearances, with 150, and Steven Gerrard is the club's record goalscorer, with 41 goals.


Background

Club competitions between teams from different European countries can trace their origins as far back as 1897 when the Challenge Cup was created for clubs in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, who did not meet under normal circumstances. The Sir Thomas Lipton Trophy, named after entrepreneur and sportsman Thomas Lipton, was established in 1909 and was contested between clubs from Italy, Great Britain, Germany and Switzerland; the competition lasted for two years. The earliest attempt to create a cup for national champion clubs of Europe was made by Swiss club FC Servette. Founded in 1930, the Coupe des Nations featured clubs of ten major European football leagues and was deemed a success. Due to financial reasons, the competition was abandoned. The first continental competition organised by UEFA was the UEFA Champions League, European Cup in 1955. Conceived by Gabriel Hanot, the editor of ''L'Équipe'', as a competition for winners of the European national football leagues, it is considered the most prestigious European football competition. When the European Cup was first played, Liverpool were in the Football League Second Division, Second Division, following relegation from the Football League First Division, First Division after the 1953–54 season, and thus were ineligible for the competition. During their time in the Second Division, two further competitions were created: the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup and UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. Established in 1955, the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup was later re-branded as the UEFA Europa League, UEFA Cup when it came under the auspices of UEFA in 1971. Since the 2009–10 season, the competition has been known as the UEFA Europa League. The UEFA Cup Winners' Cup was inaugurated in 1960 for the winners of domestic cup competitions. In 1962, Liverpool were promoted to the First Division. Two years later, they won the Football League championship, thus making their European debut in the 1964–65 European Cup. In the following years, further European competitions were inaugurated. The first, the UEFA Super Cup, was originally a match played between the winners of the European Cup and the Cup Winners' Cup. First established in 1973, it changed formats in 2000; since then, it has been contested between the winners of the Champions League (formerly the European Cup) and the Europa League (formerly the UEFA Cup), following the Cup Winners' Cup amalgamation into the latter. The Intercontinental Cup (football), Intercontinental Cup was a competition for the winners of the European Cup (later, the UEFA Champions League) and the South American equivalent, the Copa Libertadores. Established in 1960, the Intercontinental Cup was jointly organised by UEFA and the CONMEBOL, Confederación Sudamericana de Fútbol (CONMEBOL). It ran until 2004, when the FIFA Club World Cup, which includes the winners of all FIFA#Structure, six confederations' regional championships replaced it.


History


First steps in Europe – the Shankly years (1965–74)

Bill Shankly began managing Liverpool in 1959, and it was under him that the team first competed in European competition in 1964–65 European Cup, 1964–65, qualifying for the European Cup by winning the First Division championship the 1963–64 in English football, previous season. The club's first opponents were Knattspyrnufélag Reykjavíkur of Iceland, who they played in the preliminary round. Liverpool won 11–1 on aggregate score, aggregate. The next round, against Belgian club RSC Anderlecht, Anderlecht, was the first time in Liverpool's history that they wore their now common all-red strip. The decision was made to change from red shirts, white shorts and socks by Shankly, who wanted his players to make more of a psychological impact on opponents. They beat Anderlecht and progressed to the semi-finals, where they met Italian team Inter Milan. Before the first Two-legged tie, leg at Anfield, Shankly asked two injured players to parade the FA Cup, which Liverpool had won the previous week, to intimidate the Italians. The team won the match 3–1, but Inter won the second leg 3–0, securing a 4–3 aggregate victory. The second leg was controversial; Shankly described it as "a war". He felt that the referee, José María Ortiz de Mendíbil, had shown bias towards Inter, and the Liverpool players felt cheated by his decisions. The club's 1964–65 FA Cup victory ensured qualification for the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup the following season, and in that competition, they reached their 1966 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup Final, first European final. Borussia Dortmund, Liverpool's opponents, employed counter-attacking tactics that had paid dividends in previous rounds and did so again, with the West Germans beating Liverpool 2–1 after extra time. Striker, Roger Hunt, described the defeat as "an off night" and said, "it was probably the most disappointing defeat over the years because we just didn't play. In the next four seasons, they competed in the European Cup and Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, but failed to progress past the third round in either competition. A tie against Dutch team AFC Ajax, Ajax during the 1966–67 European Cup was to prove pivotal in the history of Liverpool in European competition. Ajax 5–1 Liverpool (1966), Ajax beat Liverpool 7–3 on aggregate. However, the style of football that Ajax played – a patient passing game, inspired by Johann Cruyff – convinced Shankly that Liverpool had to replicate this style to be successful in Europe. Liverpool reached the semi-finals of the 1970–71 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, losing 1–0 on aggregate to Leeds United F.C., Leeds United. They competed in the 1971–72 European Cup Winners' Cup, despite losing the 1971 FA Cup Final, as the FA Cup winners, Arsenal FC, Arsenal, had also qualified for the European Cup by winning the league championship. Liverpool were eliminated in the second round by FC Bayern Munich, Bayern Munich of Germany, losing 3–1 on aggregate. The changes made to Liverpool's tactics came to fruition during the 1972–73 UEFA Cup. The club reached their 1973 UEFA Cup Final, second European final, where they faced Borussia Mönchengladbach of Germany. Liverpool won the first leg 3–0 as a result of two goals from Kevin Keegan and one from Larry Lloyd. Victory in this first leg meant Liverpool only needed to avoid losing by three or more goals in order to win the final. This influenced their tactics – ''The Times'' reported that Liverpool employed a "holding action" against the "attacking Germans". The tactics worked, allowing Mönchengladbach only two goals, granting Liverpool a 3–2 aggregate victory. Liverpool also won the First Division championship that season, and as a result, qualified for the 1973–74 European Cup, where they were eliminated in the second round by Red Star Belgrade of Yugoslavia. The defeat marked a shift in emphasis in the style of Liverpool's play to a more patient approach. At the end of that season, Shankly retired.


European domination – the Paisley years (1974–83)

Shankly was succeeded by his assistant, Bob Paisley, in 1974. Liverpool competed in the Cup Winners' Cup during Paisley's first season and defeated Strømsgodset IF, Strømsgodset of Norway 11–0 at Anfield. This remains the club's largest margin of victory in all matches. They lost in the next round to Hungarian side Ferencvárosi TC, Ferencváros on the away goals rule. In 1975–76 the club entered the UEFA Cup after a second-place finish in the First Division. Victories over Hibernian F.C., Hibernian (Scotland), Real Sociedad (Spain), Śląsk Wrocław (Poland), Dynamo Dresden (East Germany) and FC Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain) took Liverpool to their third European final. Crucial to their progress was goalkeeper Ray Clemence, who made two important Penalty kick (association football), penalty saves against Hibernian and Dresden, saving Liverpool from elimination on the away goals rule on both occasions. Their opponents in the final were Club Brugge KV, Club Brugge of Belgium. Liverpool recovered from a two-goal deficit to win the first leg at Anfield 3–2, with Ray Kennedy, Jimmy Case, and Keegan scoring a goal each in a span of six minutes. A 1–1 draw at the Jan Breydel Stadion in Bruges meant Liverpool won 4–3 on aggregate, earning their second UEFA Cup. As the 1975–76 in English football, 1975–76 league champions, the club entered the 1976–77 European Cup. They defeated Crusaders FC, Crusaders of Northern Ireland and Trabzonspor of Turkey to reach the quarter-finals, where they faced the runners-up from the previous season, AS Saint-Étienne, Saint-Étienne. The French team won the first leg 1–0. The second leg at Anfield began well for Liverpool when Keegan scored in the first two minutes. Saint-Étienne equalised to make the score 2–1 on aggregate in their favour. Kennedy scored for Liverpool, but the away goals rule meant they still needed another goal to win the tie. With six minutes remaining, David Fairclough was brought on to replace John Toshack; he immediately scored in front of the Spion Kop (stadiums), Kop, ensuring a 3–2 aggregate victory for Liverpool. In the semi-finals, they defeated FC Zürich of Switzerland 6–1 on aggregate to reach the final, where they met their opponents from the 1973 UEFA Cup Final, Borussia Mönchengladbach. The 1977 European Cup Final, final was held in Rome, four days after the club had lost the 1977 FA Cup Final to Manchester United F.C., Manchester United. Before the match, Paisley announced that striker Toshack would be fit to start. However, he was not named in the matchday squad. This change upset the Germans' game plan and allowed Keegan to torment his marker, Berti Vogts. Liverpool won 3–1 to become European champions for the first time. By winning the European Cup, they qualified for the European Super Cup and played the winners of the Cup Winners' Cup, German team Hamburger SV, Hamburg, who had just signed Keegan. Liverpool won 1977 European Super Cup, the tie 7–1 on aggregate. Liverpool entered the 1977–78 European Cup as champions and received a Bye (sports), bye in the first round. They defeated Dynamo Dresden and Portuguese team S.L. Benfica, Benfica in the second round and quarter-finals, respectively. In the semi-final, the club again met Borussia Mönchengladbach, who won the first leg 2–1. Liverpool won the second leg 3–0, progressing to a second successive 1978 European Cup Final, European Cup final, this time against Club Brugge at Wembley Stadium (1923), Wembley Stadium in London. In the final Kenny Dalglish, who had been signed to replace Keegan, scored the winning goal after receiving the ball from a Graeme Souness pass. The 1–0 victory meant Liverpool became the first British team to retain the European Cup. They faced Anderlecht in the 1978 European Super Cup, but failed to retain the trophy, losing 4–3 on aggregate against the Belgian side. Liverpool were eliminated in the first round of the 1978–79 European Cup by English champions Nottingham Forest F.C., Nottingham Forest. Nottingham Forest won the tie 2–0 on aggregate, and went on to win the competition. Liverpool entered the 1979–80 European Cup as English champions but were again eliminated in the first round, this time beaten 4–2 on aggregate by FC Dinamo Tbilisi, Dinamo Tbilisi of the Soviet Union. Liverpool participated in the 1980–81 European Cup as English league champions, defeating Finnish champions Oulun Palloseura, Scottish club Aberdeen F.C., Aberdeen and PFC CSKA Sofia, CSKA Sofia of Bulgaria to qualify for the semi-finals, where they faced three-time champions Bayern Munich. The first leg at Anfield finished goalless. In the second leg at the Olympic Stadium (Munich), Olympiastadion in Munich, Ray Kennedy scored in the 83rd minute and, although the German side equalised, Liverpool went through to the final on the away goals rule. They faced Spanish side Real Madrid CF, Real Madrid in the 1981 European Cup Final, final, held at the Parc des Princes in Paris. Alan Kennedy scored the only goal to give Liverpool a 1–0 victory, which secured the club's—and Paisley's—third European Cup. As champions of Europe, Liverpool competed in the Intercontinental Cup against South American champions Clube de Regatas do Flamengo, Flamengo of Brazil. Liverpool lost 1981 Intercontinental Cup, the match 3–0. The club's defence of the European Cup in 1981–82 European Cup, 1981–82 was ended by CSKA Sofia in the quarter-finals. Another quarter-final exit occurred in the 1982–83 European Cup when Polish club Widzew Łódź eliminated Liverpool 4–3 on aggregate. Paisley retired as manager at the end of the season and was succeeded by his assistant, Joe Fagan.


Triumph and tragedy – the Fagan years (1983–85)

Liverpool entered the 1983–84 European Cup as league champions for the fourth time in five seasons. Victories over Odense Boldklub, Odense of Denmark and Spanish champions Athletic Bilbao brought Liverpool to face Portuguese champions Benfica in the quarter-finals. Liverpool won the first leg at Anfield 1–0. In the second leg, their tactic of withdrawing Dalglish into midfield put Benfica's game plan into disarray, leading to a 4–1 match victory and a 5–1 aggregate victory. Their opponents in the semi-finals were FC Dinamo București, Dinamo București of Romania. The tie proved a brutal encounter, characterised by Souness breaking the jaw of the Bucharest Captain (association football), captain Lică Movilă, and was won 3–1 on aggregate by Liverpool. Fagan's first season in charge of Liverpool had been a successful one. When they reached their fourth European Cup final, they had already won the Football League Cup and the league championship; victory in the European final against Italian side A.S. Roma, Roma would complete an unprecedented Treble (association football), treble. The final was played at Rome's Stadio Olimpico, and Liverpool went ahead in the 13th minute when Phil Neal scored, though Roma equalised towards the end of the first half. The score remained the same throughout full and extra time; Liverpool won the subsequent Penalty shoot-out (association football), penalty shoot-out, with Alan Kennedy scoring the winning penalty after goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar had put off Francesco Graziani, causing him to place his penalty over the crossbar. After the game, gangs of Roma fans assaulted Liverpool supporters travelling back to their hotels. Success in the European Cup entitled Liverpool to compete in the 1984 Intercontinental Cup. However, they were unable to beat the winners of the Copa Libertadores, Club Atlético Independiente, Independiente of Argentina, who claimed a 1–0 victory. Liverpool entered the 1984–85 European Cup as champions, and once again progressed to the final, where their opponents were Juventus F.C., Juventus of Italy. They aimed to win their fifth European Cup and keep the trophy. The 1985 European Cup Final was held at the Heysel Stadium in Brussels. The choice of venue had been criticised due to the dilapidated state of the stadium, and the club tried to persuade UEFA to change the venue. Before the kick-off, Liverpool fans breached a fence separating the two groups of supporters and charged the Juventus fans. The resulting weight of people Heysel Stadium disaster, caused a retaining wall to collapse, killing 39 people and injuring hundreds more. Despite calls for an abandonment, the match was played, as it was felt that further trouble would be caused otherwise. Juventus won the match 1–0; Michel Platini scored from the Penalty area, penalty spot to give Juventus their first European Cup. UEFA laid the blame for the incident solely on the Liverpool fans: the official UEFA observer stated, "Only the English fans were responsible. Of that there is no doubt". Three days after the final, UEFA banned all English clubs from European competition for an indefinite period. Liverpool were initially given an additional three-year ban. Fagan retired after the 1984–85 season and was succeeded by Dalglish, who took over as Player-coach, player-manager. The ban on English clubs in European competitions ultimately lasted for five years, and even when the ban was lifted in 1990, Liverpool were not re-admitted; they had to serve an extra year. The ban prevented them qualifying for the European Cup in 1986, 1988 and 1990 (as league champions), the UEFA Cup in 1987 (as league runners-up), and the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1989 (as FA Cup winners). The only international matches of a somewhat competitive nature played in that time were in the Dubai Champions Cup against the champions of Scotland; Liverpool defeated Celtic F.C., Celtic on penalties in December 1986, then lost to the same opposition by the same method in April 1989, nine days prior to the Hillsborough disaster.


Return to Europe (1991–2004)

Liverpool were allowed to return to European competition in the 1991–92 season, a year later than other English clubs. They qualified for the UEFA Cup as runners-up in the English league. Their manager by this stage was Graeme Souness, who had taken over towards the end of the previous season following Dalglish's resignation. Their first match, in the 1991–92 UEFA Cup, UEFA Cup, was against Finnish side FC Lahti, Kuusyi Lahti, which they won 6–1. A 6–2 aggregate victory set up a tie against AJ Auxerre, Auxerre of France in the second round who they beat 3–2 on aggregate. The club defeated FC Swarovski Tirol, Swarovski Tirol of Austria in the third round 6–0 on aggregate before losing to Genoa C.F.C., Genoa (Italy) 4–1 over two legs in the quarter-finals. Liverpool's victory over Sunderland A.F.C., Sunderland in the 1992 FA Cup Final qualified them for the 1992–93 European Cup Winners' Cup, but this campaign was short-lived, as they were eliminated in the second round by Russian side FC Spartak Moscow, Spartak Moscow. Liverpool finished no higher than sixth in the Premier League during the next two seasons, thus failing to qualify for European competition. In the 1995–96 Liverpool F.C. season, 1995–96 season, they entered the UEFA Cup, but again progressed no further than the second round, this time losing to Brøndby IF, Brøndby of Denmark. As runners-up to League champions Manchester United in the 1996 FA Cup Final, Liverpool were able to compete in the 1996–97 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. This proved the club's most successful campaign since their return to European competition, as they reached the semi-finals, where they were eliminated 3–2 on aggregate by Paris Saint-Germain F.C., Paris Saint–Germain. In the next two seasons, Liverpool played in the UEFA Cup but were eliminated at an early stage of the competition, by RC Strasbourg Alsace, Strasbourg and Celta de Vigo, respectively. A seventh-place finish in the 1998–99 FA Premier League meant the club did not qualify for Europe in 1999–2000 Liverpool F.C. season, 1999–2000. Having finished fourth in the 1999–2000 FA Premier League, Liverpool qualified for the 2000–01 UEFA Cup. Their victory in this competition marked a third win for a club. The entire season was the club's most successful since the 1983–84 Liverpool F.C. season, 1983–84 season, as they won a cup treble consisting of the UEFA Cup, the FA Cup and the League Cup. Their opponents in the 2001 UEFA Cup Final, final in Dortmund were Deportivo Alavés, Alavés of Spain. The match was tied at 4–4 in extra time when Alavés defender Delfí Geli scored an own goal to give Liverpool victory on the golden goal rule. The performance of Gary McAllister, whose free-kick resulted in the winning goal, was praised as "outstanding" by Trevor Brooking. This was the club's first European trophy since their European Cup victory in 1984. As UEFA Cup winners, Liverpool played in the 2001 UEFA Super Cup against Champions League winners Bayern Munich and won 3–2. In the 2001–02 Liverpool F.C. season, 2001–02 season, Liverpool returned to the European Cup, now called the UEFA Champions League, for the first time since the Heysel disaster. A 2–0 victory over Roma in the second group stage meant they progressed to the quarter-finals. They faced German club Bayer Leverkusen and won the first leg 1–0. The outlook for the second leg appeared to be to Liverpool's advantage, as their counter-attacking style of play had served them well during away matches throughout the season; however, they lost the second leg 4–2 and were eliminated 4–3 on aggregate. A second-place finish in the 2001–02 FA Premier League entitled Liverpool to participate in the Champions League for a second successive season, but they only finished third in their group and were eliminated from the competition. The third-place finish meant they entered the 2002–03 UEFA Cup. Liverpool beat Dutch team Vitesse Arnhem and Auxerre to set up an all-British tie with Scottish team Celtic F.C., Celtic. A 1–1 draw in the first leg meant Liverpool would progress to the semi-finals if they did not concede a goal in the second leg at Anfield. However, Celtic scored before half-time and again in the second half to win 3–1 on aggregate. Liverpool entered the UEFA Cup for the 2003–04 Liverpool F.C. season, 2003–04 season, after Chelsea F.C., Chelsea beat them on the final day of the 2002–03 FA Premier League, previous league season to claim the fourth place needed to qualify for the Champions League. Liverpool were eliminated in the fourth round by eventual runners-up Olympique de Marseille, Marseille of France. At the end of the season, manager Gérard Houllier was replaced by Rafael Benítez.


Renewed European success – the Benítez years (2004–10)

Liverpool had finished fourth in the 2003–04 FA Premier League, 2003–04 season, which qualified them to compete in the Champions League in the 2004–05 Liverpool F.C. season, 2004–05 season. A poor start in the group stages, with two losses in their first five games, had the club facing elimination. A 3–1 victory over Greek side Olympiacos F.C., Olympiacos, however, eventually ensured their passage to the knock-out rounds. Liverpool beat Bayer Leverkusen and Juventus to reach the semi-finals, and progressed to the final after they beat Chelsea 1–0 on aggregate; the goal scored by Luis García (footballer, born 1978), Luis García was referred to as a "ghost goal" by Chelsea manager José Mourinho, as it was unclear whether the ball crossed the goal line. Liverpool's performances in Europe contrasted strongly with their league form, where they struggled to finish in the top-four and thus ensure qualification for the next Champions League season. Liverpool faced six-time European champions A.C. Milan, Milan in the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final, final at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium, Atatürk Stadium in Istanbul on 25 May 2005. Trailing 3–0 at half-time, they scored three goals in a six-minute spell in the second half to level the score at 3–3. There were no goals during extra time, so the match was decided by a penalty shoot-out. With the shoot-out score at 3–2, Liverpool goalkeeper Jerzy Dudek saved Andriy Shevchenko's penalty to give Liverpool victory. The nature of Liverpool's comeback victory has led to the match being referred to as the "miracle of Istanbul." As this was the club's fifth European Cup victory, Liverpool were allowed to keep the European Champion Clubs' Cup permanently, and a new trophy was commissioned for the following year's competition. The victory also entitled Liverpool to compete in the 2005 UEFA Super Cup at Stade Louis II, Monaco in August. They defeated UEFA Cup winners PFC CSKA Moscow, CSKA Moscow of Russia 3–1 (a.e.t.) to win their third Super Cup. Their success in the Champions League meant Liverpool also qualified for the 2005 FIFA Club World Championship, where they lost 1–0 in the 2005 FIFA Club World Championship Final, final to Brazilian team São Paulo FC, São Paulo. A fifth-place finish in the Premier League in 2004–05 meant Liverpool were not guaranteed entry into the Champions League, and faced the prospect of not being able to defend their European title. UEFA eventually ruled that they were allowed to defend their title but have to start in the first qualifying round, with no country protection, meaning they could face a team from England in the group stages. This turned out to be the case—Liverpool advanced through three qualifying rounds and were drawn with Chelsea in the group stages. They progressed from their group as winners but were beaten by Benfica in the first knock-out round. In the 2006–07 UEFA Champions League, 2006–07 Champions League, Liverpool progressed from the group stages and beat holders Barcelona, PSV Eindhoven, PSV and Chelsea to face Milan in a rematch of the 2005 final. The Liverpool team, which contained only five players from the 2005 final, enjoyed more possession than in 2005, but two goals from Filippo Inzaghi gave Milan their seventh European Cup in 2007 UEFA Champions League Final, a 2–1 win. Liverpool were eliminated from the 2007–08 UEFA Champions League, 2007–08 Champions League in the semi-finals by Chelsea, who they had beaten in the semi-finals in 2005 and 2007. A fourth-place finish in the 2007–08 Premier League secured their entry into the 2008–09 UEFA Champions League, 2008–09 Champions League. Liverpool reached the quarter-finals and again faced Chelsea, but lost 7–5 on aggregate. A second-place finish in the 2008–09 Premier League entitled Liverpool to compete in the 2009–10 UEFA Champions League, but their campaign was short-lived; they finished third in their group, and were eliminated from the competition. They entered the 2009–10 UEFA Europa League, progressing to the semi-finals, where they were eliminated by eventual winners Atlético Madrid of Spain on the away goals rule after the tie finished 2–2 on aggregate.


Decline (2010–15)

Rafael Benítez left the club at the end of the 2009–10 season and was replaced by Roy Hodgson. A seventh-place finish in the 2009–10 Premier League meant Liverpool would be competing in the 2010–11 UEFA Europa League, 2010–11 Europa League. They beat FK Rabotnički, Rabotnički of Macedonia and Trabzonspor of Turkey to progress to the 2010–11 UEFA Europa League group stage, group stage, where Liverpool were drawn alongside S.S.C. Napoli, Napoli, FC Utrecht and FC Steaua București, Steaua București. They won two games and drew four to finish top of their group with ten points and progress to the round of 32. They were drawn against AC Sparta Prague, Sparta Prague in the next round. Before the tie was played, however, Hodgson was replaced by former manager Kenny Dalglish, who initially served as a caretaker manager. A 1–0 aggregate victory ensured progression to the round of 16, in which Liverpool lost 1–0 on aggregate to eventual runners-up S.C. Braga, Braga. A sixth-place finish in the 2010–11 Premier League meant the club failed to qualify for European competition for the first time since 1999. On the following season, victory in the 2012 Football League Cup Final, League Cup final ensured Liverpool a place in the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League, 2012–13 Europa League. Liverpool qualified for the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League knockout phase, knockout phase of the 2012–13 Europa League after winning their group at the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League group stage, group stage, but were eliminated from the competition at the round of 32 by FC Zenit Saint Petersburg, Zenit Saint Petersburg on the away goals rule after a 0–2 loss away and a 3–1 win at home. A seventh-place finish in the 2012–13 Premier League and a failure to secure qualification via domestic cups meant Liverpool failed to qualify for any European competition in the 2013–14 season. A second-placed finish in the 2013–14 Premier League, ensured Liverpool qualified for the group stage of the 2014–15 UEFA Champions League, 2014–15 Champions League. One win out of six in the group stage meant they were eliminated and entered into the 2014–15 UEFA Europa League knockout phase, knockout phase of the 2014–15 UEFA Europa League, 2014–15 Europa League. The campaign was short-lived, as Liverpool were eliminated by Beşiktaş J.K., Beşiktaş in the 2014–15 UEFA Europa League knockout phase#Round of 32, round of 32.


Resurgence – the Klopp years (2015–present)

Finishing sixth in the 2014–15 Premier League qualified Liverpool directly to the 2015–16 UEFA Europa League group stage, group stage of the 2015–16 UEFA Europa League, 2015–16 Europa League, where they faced FC Sion, Sion, FC Girondins de Bordeaux, Bordeaux and for the first time, Russian side FC Rubin Kazan, Rubin Kazan. During the group stage, manager Brendan Rodgers was replaced by Jürgen Klopp. After winning the group, Liverpool qualified for the knockout phase, beating FC Augsburg in the round of 32 before facing Liverpool F.C.–Manchester United F.C. rivalry, bitter rivals Manchester United in the round of 16, the two clubs' first meeting in Europe. Liverpool defeated them 3–1 on aggregate and victory led to a quarter-final tie with Klopp's former team Borussia Dortmund. After a 1–1 draw in the first leg at Westfalenstadion, Signal Iduna Park, Dortmund went 3–1 up in the return leg at Anfield with 33 minutes remaining, requiring Liverpool to score three goals due to the Away goals rule. Goals from Philippe Coutinho, Mamadou Sakho and a last minute winner from Dejan Lovren, however, saw Liverpool complete the comeback and qualify for their first European semi-final since 2010. There they faced Villarreal CF, Villarreal, completing a second comeback after overturning a 1–0 defeat in the first leg at Estadio El Madrigal, El Madrigal to qualify for the final with a 3–1 aggregate win. Liverpool played Sevilla FC, Sevilla in the 2016 UEFA Europa League Final, final at St. Jakob-Park, Basel, on 18 May, losing 3–1. A 4th-place finish in the 2016–17 Premier League qualified Liverpool for the 2017–18 UEFA Champions League and a return to Europe's premier club tournament for only the second time in 8 years during the 2010s. On 17 October 2017, Liverpool won 7–0 away to NK Maribor, Maribor in the third round of matches of the 2017–18 UEFA Champions League group stage, group stage of the 2017–18 UEFA Champions League. The win was a record away win for Liverpool in European competitions and also the biggest away win by an English team in the history of the European Cup. They also defeated FC Spartak Moscow, Spartak Moscow at home by the same scoreline on the last matchday to qualify top of their group, proceeding to defeat Porto 5–0 at the Estadio de Dragao in the round of 16, before holding them to a 0–0 draw on the return leg. Liverpool then defeated domestic rivals Manchester City 3–0 and 2–1, and in the semi-finals, defeated Roma 5–2 at Anfield, before a 4–2 loss led to a 7–6 aggregate win, taking them to the 2018 UEFA Champions League Final, final, against holders Real Madrid. Liverpool lost the final by 3–1 but finished 4th in the 2017–18 Premier League to qualify for the 2018–19 UEFA Champions League. Liverpool reached the Champions League final for the second consecutive year in 2018–19 UEFA Champions League, 2018–19 after overcoming a 3–0 first-leg deficit by beating FC Barcelona, Barcelona Liverpool 4–0 Barcelona, 4–0 in the second leg at Anfield, with the match being considered one of the greatest Champions League comebacks of all-time. This time, the Reds won the 2019 UEFA Champions League Final, final 2–0, beating fellow English side Tottenham Hotspur F.C., Tottenham Hotspur, thus securing the club's sixth European title and lifting their first European trophy since 2005. Liverpool went on to win the 2019 UEFA Super Cup after extra-time and Penalty shoot-out (association football), penalties. It was their fourth title, placing them behind only Barcelona and Milan, who have won the competition five times each. In December 2019, Liverpool won the FIFA Club World Cup for the first time. After defeating Mexican club C.F. Monterrey, Monterrey 2–1 in the semi-final, the club defeated Brazilian club Clube de Regatas do Flamengo, Flamengo 1–0 in the 2019 FIFA Club World Cup Final, final, with Roberto Firmino scoring the winning goal in both games. The Champions League 2019–20 UEFA Champions League, title defense ended early for the Reds, as they were eliminated by Atlético Madrid following a 4–2 defeat across two legs after Overtime (sports)#Association football, extra time in the round of 16. Liverpool qualified for the 2020–21 UEFA Champions League, 2020–21 edition group stage by winning the 2019–20 Premier League, Premier League. The club reached the 2020–21 UEFA Champions League knockout phase, quarter-finals where they were eliminated 3–1 on aggregate to Real Madrid. Liverpool finished third in the 2020–21 Premier League, meaning the team qualified for the premier European competition for the fifth consecutive year. On 19 October 2021, Liverpool won 3–2 away to Atlético Madrid with Mohamed Salah scoring twice to become Liverpool's record goalscorer in the Champions League, surpassing the previous record of 30 goals by Steven Gerrard. On 7 December, Liverpool won 2–1 against AC Milan at the San Siro and became the first English club to 2021–22 UEFA Champions League group stage#Group B, win all six Champions League group games in the competition’s history.


Records

* Most appearances in European competition: Jamie Carragher, 150 * Most goals in European competition: Steven Gerrard, 41 * Most continental goals in a season: Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, 11 (during the 2017–18 UEFA Champions League, 2017–18 season). * First European match: Liverpool 6–0 Knattspyrnufélag Reykjavíkur, European Cup, first round, 17 August 1964 * First goal scored in Europe: Gordon Wallace (footballer born 1944), Gordon Wallace, against KR Reykjavik * Biggest win: Liverpool 11–0 Strømsgodset, in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, 17 September 1974 * Biggest defeat: AFC Ajax 5–1 Liverpool F.C. (1966), Liverpool 1–5 Ajax, in the European Cup, 7 December 1966 * Highest European home attendance: 55,104, against Barcelona in the 1975–76 UEFA Cup, 14 April 1976 * Lowest European home attendance: 12,021 against Dundalk F.C., Dundalk in the 1982–83 European Cup


By season

Key *Pld = Played *W = Games won *D = Games drawn *L = Games lost *GF = Goals for *GA = Goals against *GD = Goal difference *Grp = Group stage *R1 = First round *R2 = Second round *R3 = Third round *R4 = Fourth round *R16 = Round of 16 *R32 = Round of 32 *QF = Quarter-final *SF = Semi-final Key to colours:


By competition


By country


Honours


Notes


References


Bibliography

* * * * * *


External links


Official Liverpool FC website

Official UEFA site
{{featured article English football clubs in international competitions Liverpool F.C.