Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey ‘dream’ to play at Anfield

Atletico de Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey has said that it is a dream of his to play at Anfield ahead of their Champions League tie.

Atleti lead 1-0 from the first leg in the Spanish capital three weeks ago and the tie is on a knife-edge ahead of Wednesday’s second leg in Liverpool.

Jurgen Klopp’s side remain slight favourites to progress on aggregate but an away goal for Los Rojiblancos would put them in command of the tie and see the hosts need to secure a two-goal winning margin on the night.

“We are prepared. It is a dream for me to play against them in their stadium. I hope it stays forever in my career,” Partey told reporters at his pre-match press conference, as cited by Marca.

“They are doing well. We have to be focused one hundred percent. We know it will be difficult.

“Klopp said not many of us had played at Anfield? For us as players it is important that the teammates help each other. Sometimes opinions are opinions. We are here to do our job.”

The midfielder also addressed the issue of coronavirus and the fact that all football matches in Spain will be played behind closed doors for the next two weeks, at least.

There have been multiple calls from clubs and the AFE Spanish players union to postpone matches altogether in this case, but Partey did not agree.

“We will find out what happens. As a player it is nice to play with fans, but if it is behind closed doors and it helps to lower the risk, we don’t care,” he added.

“We have to concentrate on our work. The decisions do not depend on the players but the organisers – I will just try to help my team.”

It follows on from a La Liga statement earlier on Tuesday that all matches in the nation would be played behind closed doors for the next two weeks.

The league is following protocol from the Spanish Council of Sports that all sporting events – both professional and non-professional – be played behind closed doors.

It follows similar measures in Italy (where no sport is now being staged due to a lockdown until early April) and France, while measures are in place across a number of other nations.

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