Jurgen Klopp has explained the importance of having English players at Liverpool, and outlined why he will always meet players before they sign.
Klopp continues to do a tremendous job at Anfield, with the German guiding the Reds into the Champions League semi-finals in just two-and-a-half years.
There is a strong English contingent at the club, which at a time when continental imports often feel more exciting, technically gifted individuals almost comes as a surprise.
Jordan Henderson and James Milner are the captain and vice-captain respectively, and Klopp is also a big admirer of the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez, Adam Lallana, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Danny Ings.
Having an English core is no fluke, with Klopp telling the Guardian about the importance of them leading the squad, but also highlighting their quality as footballers:
“They are here because they’re really good—not because they’re English or British.
“But if you have two players at the same level and one is English and the other is from somewhere else I always go for the English guy.
“They keep the mood good and for them it’s easy to feel the club’s history.
“But we have fantastic boys from all over the world and they love the club. Roberto Firmino has such a Liverpool heart. But the English guys lead the group.
“Tottenham and us we are pretty much the English national team and I like that.”
When it comes to signing players, Klopp feels it is of the utmost importance to meet them before they sign on the dotted line.
It allows the 50-year-old, who rates himself as a people person, to dissect the player’s character, with Mohamed Salah a good recent example:
“I always meet the player before we sign.
“That’s when I decide because I have a good feeling for people. It was a fantastic talk.
“He’s open, smiling all the time. He has crazy curls but he’s a really nice boy. He also looked much more mature than it says on his passport. Twenty-four? I was: ‘Wow, really?’
“We talked for three hours about everything from his family to my family and at the end we had a deal to work together.
“I like to remind players from time to time of that agreement. It’s working really well with Mo.”
Klopp is one of the world’s best managers, his sides play magnificent attacking football, and as a human being he comes across superbly.
A chunk of the English squad members aren’t universally popular with supporters, but what is not immediately apparent is the impact they are having around the club.
Their all-round influence seems to be paying off handsomely, as Liverpool prepare to welcome Roma to a deafening Anfield on Tuesday night.
Thousands of television sets in Rome will be tuned into broadcasts from Anfield on Tuesday night as AS Roma take on Liverpool in the Champions League – but there’ll be at least one very familiar face among them hoping for a victory for Jürgen Klopp’s side…
Lucas Leiva swapped Merseyside for the Italian city last summer as he bade farewell to the Reds after 10 years of sterling service to join SS Lazio; however, his passion for his former club remains as steadfast as ever.
And though Lucas will be some 1,400 miles away tonight, he knows exactly what kind of atmosphere Roma can expect to encounter in the first leg of the European semi-final.
The Brazilian told Liverpoolfc.com: “It will be a great night, for sure. For the players, a good experience.
“It’s a big game, a semi-final. It maybe won’t be that different from some games that I experienced with Liverpool - the Europa League, that game against Dortmund and then Villarreal.
“I’m looking forward to it and I’ll be supporting Liverpool for sure.”
While Lucas will be glued to his TV screen for the first leg, he’s hoping to be a little closer to the action next week.
He plans to attend the return meeting at the Stadio Olimpico – and to do so as part of the travelling Liverpool supporters.
“I’m still thinking about it, but I’m hoping I can go to the Liverpool end and watch the game - and maybe take some of my friends and my son,” he said.
“We still follow Liverpool a lot, we watch every game and I hope they can get to the final.”
The task of getting to that final in Kiev certainly won’t be an easy one for Liverpool as they prepare to come up against a Roma side who eliminated FC Barcelona at the quarter-final stage with a monumental comeback.
After losing the first-leg meeting at the Nou Camp 4-1, Eusebio Di Francesco’s team upset all the odds to conjure up a dramatic fightback and record a 3-0 victory over the Spanish giants to progress.
“They are full of confidence of course after the win against Barca,” Lucas explained. “Fair play to them because they played really well and I think they deserved it. The boost that gave them is massive.
“But in the city, one side will be supporting the Reds - the Lazio fans - because they don’t want to see their rival going to the final of course, but the other side of Rome is really excited, so it is going to be a big, big semi-final and let’s see what is going to happen.
“I would say Roma is a very aggressive team. They play a Premier League style of play I would say. They press very high and they have some quick players.
“They also have [Edin] Dzeko and he is a big player for them. Liverpool will know him very well.
“We can expect a very good semi-final, but I think Liverpool have all the tools and the power to win because we could see against Manchester City how strong Anfield is.
“Having a good result in the first game could be the key as well for the second game here in Rome.”
Liverpool have enjoyed some truly special European encounters with AS Roma over the years.
From winning the European Cup in 1984 through to an unforgettable return to the dugout for Gerard Houllier in 2002 - take a trip down memory lane below.
May 30, 1984: European Cup final
The very first meeting between Liverpool and AS Roma was the 1984 European Cup final. Joe Fagan's side were chasing a unique treble, but needed to overcome a talented Roma side playing at their own ground - the Stadio Olimpico. The Italian outfit boasted Brazil stars Falcao and Cerezo among their number plus the highly coveted Bruno Conti. The Reds got off to the perfect start as Phil Neal, who netted the decisive goal in the 1977 European Cup final on the very same pitch, pounced to open the scoring. However, Roberto Pruzzo levelled for AS Roma just before the break with a header. In the penalty shootout that followed, Bruce Grobbelaar’s antics on the goalline proved pivotal as Conti and Francesco Graziani both missed. It was then left to 1981 European Cup final hero Alan Kennedy to keep his nerve and secure his team a fourth European Cup.
February 15, 2001: UEFA Cup fourth round, first leg
The Reds enjoyed another fine night at the Stadio Olimpico in the first leg of this 2000-01 UEFA Cup fourth-round tie. Michael Owen was the hero of the night, netting two superb goals in the second half. With rock-solid duo Sami Hyypia and Stephane Henchoz at the back, Liverpool kept a clean sheet to take a healthy lead back to Anfield.
February 22, 2001: UEFA Cup fourth round, second leg
It was a nervy night at Anfield as Liverpool progressed to the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup despite a 1-0 second-leg defeat. Roma’s Marco Delvecchio had a glorious early opportunity for the visitors when he found himself clean through on goal but failed to hit the target. Owen then had a chance to increase the aggregate lead when the Reds were awarded a penalty on the hour mark, but saw his effort kept out by Francesco Antonioli. Roma gave themselves hope when substitute Gianni Guigou netted on 70 minutes before a controversial and ultimately decisive moment in the tie turned things back in the hosts' favour. Roma appeared to have been awarded a penalty when Jose Maria Garcia-Aranda pointed to the spot following a handball by defender Markus Babbel, only for the Spanish referee to change his mind and give a corner. The rest, as they say, is history.
December 5, 2001: Champions League second group phase, matchday two
Following a 3-1 Anfield defeat by Barcelona in the opening game of the second group phase, the Reds travelled to the Stadio Olimpico in need of a positive result. With Gerard Houllier absent due to illness, his trusty No.2 Phil Thompson remained in charge of the side. AS Roma fielded the formidable strikeforce of Gabriel Batistuta and Francesco Totti but could not break down an obstinate Reds backline. Thompson couldn’t hide his delight after the match and said: "It was important we didn't lose and now we go into the break with a point on the board. My players were magnificent - progressive in the first half and defensively strong in the second. That will give us a lot of heart.”
March 19, 2001: Champions League second group phase, matchday six
Liverpool reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League as they produced a superb display in this must-win game. The tone for an unforgettable evening was set when manager Houllier unexpectedly returned to the dugout following an extended spell on the sidelines after major heart surgery. The Frenchman's surprise presence cranked up the atmosphere inside the ground, giving the Reds a major advantage. On the pitch, Jari Litmanen kept his nerve to convert a seventh-minute penalty and Emile Heskey then rose to head home the vital second goal just past the hour.
Liverpool’s Champions League semi-final meeting with AS Roma brings back some special memories for two particular Liverpool legends.
Alan Kennedy will always be remembered as the man who scored winning goals in two separate European Cup finals for the Reds.
The second of those crucial strikes came from the penalty spot against Roma in their own backyard at the Stadio Olimpico in 1984.
Gary McAllister, the inspired Gerard Houllier signing who was key to the treble-winning 2000-01 season, also shone against the Italians in a huge game.
The Scot played a vital role in a fourth-round UEFA Cup victory that preceded the Reds lifting the trophy after beating Alaves in a thrilling final later that year.
Ahead of Liverpool and Roma renewing their rivalry, the former Anfield duo shared their memories of previous encounters - read on to relive these special moments.
“We were a good team and we didn’t fear anybody at that particular time. Going to face Roma in Rome, we knew it was going to be difficult. When we travelled away from home in Europe we wanted to keep their crowd quiet. I think it all started in the tunnel when we were stood next to the Roma players. They looked nice and relaxed and it was their home game so they were probably the favourites.
“The team talk wasn’t that much different to any other game so we were quite relaxed when we went out onto the pitch, although you do feel the crowd and the intimidation of the crowd when you come out of the tunnel.
“The game itself we set out to try and keep their fans quiet and to try and control the game, keep the ball. We had people like Ian Rush who was a fantastic goalscorer, Kenny Dalglish who played in the midfield that night.
“We got off to a great start when our right-back Phil Neal scored. He started the move and finished it off. We all relaxed a little bit after that. Pruzzo then scored with a wonderful header before half-time and it was a poor time for us to give away a goal.
“It then came to penalties and I wasn’t actually nominated in the pre-penalty shootout takers. After 90 minutes and extra-time our manager Joe Fagan had made a few substitutions and it was a case of who was on the pitch and who wasn’t and we were all looking at each other. The manager came to me and said, ‘Are you okay?' I said I was and the next minute I’d been nominated to take a penalty, but I didn’t know that at first!
“Steve Nicol took our first penalty and he missed it. It was then my turn to take the penalty and none of the players had any confidence in what I was going to do. I knew that anyway and I wanted to prove them wrong. The important thing for me was to hit the target.
“They say never change your mind which way you are going to put the ball. It was the best thing I ever did to change my mind! I put it to the right of [Franco] Tancredi, the ball hit the back of the net and I ran off towards the Liverpool players. They were actually stunned, he’s actually scored!”
“Although this was 17 years ago, I remember it very well, especially the game in Anfield. In Rome it was strange because Roma dominated the game but it was two opportunist strikes from Michael Owen that got us the win, very typical Owen.
“2-0 is a difficult result coming back to Anfield because do you try and protect it or get the third goal? Roma scored first and they were playing very well again, enjoying good spells of possession.
“They were a good team with people like [Vincent] Candela, [Vincenzo] Montella, [Gabriel] Batistuta, Walter Samuel, so fantastic players and you tend to forget how good they were back then.
“Obviously the referee gave an amazing decision. I was directly behind the referee and it looked to me as if it were a penalty. He pointed to the penalty spot but then strangely changed his hand and then there was a change of mind! I remember Batistuta running to grab the ball as though he was going to take a corner and I think that’s what swayed the referee. I thought it was a handball.
“We went on to beat Barcelona in the semi-final and then Alaves in the final so it just goes to show you do need a little bit of luck.”
As Liverpool make a return to the semi-finals of the Champions League, test your knowledge of the Reds’ previous fortunes at this stage of the competition.
The Reds are all set to feature in the last-four stage for the first time since 2008, with two tough but winnable ties to be played against historic Italian rivals Roma.
Liverpool have reached this stage of the Champions League (not including European Cup) on three previous occasions, with some unforgettable, incredible and heart-breaking moments along the way.
But how well do you remember the previous encounters? Put your knowledge to the test by taking the 12 questions below. Good luck!
Trent Alexander-Arnold will step out onto the Anfield pitch this evening fully aware of what Liverpool featuring in a Champions League semi-final means to the club's supporters.
It is 10 years since the Reds previously reached the last four of Europe's premier cup competition, and the buzz around the city is palpable, according to Trent.
As such, the Scouse teenager is even more determined to reward the support of fans who have waited so long for a taste of glory by helping Jürgen Klopp's team past AS Roma and into the final.
He told UEFA: "It means everything. I think the fans and the club as a whole have been really patient.
"We’re happy to be back in the semi-finals, it’s where a club like this belongs, and hopefully we’ll be here many more times in the next few years, and we’ll push on to reach the final and challenge to win it.
"[There's] excitement, just pure excitement in the city, I’d say. It’s been 10 years since we’ve been in the semi-finals, so a lot of people have been waiting 10 long years to be back in this type of situation and to be challenging for silverware going into the last couple of weeks of the season.
"It adds a bit more of a buzz around the club knowing that you’re close to possibly winning something.
"You feel a lot more people taking notice of you around the city, and they want you to do well."
The foundations for Liverpool's 5-1 on aggregate win over Manchester City at the quarter-final stage were laid in a 3-0 first-leg victory at a raucous Anfield.
The Reds are at home first again against Roma, and Alexander-Arnold is hoping the club's supporters can play a big part once more.
He added: "We obviously used the atmosphere to our advantage. It was always going to be a hard place for City to come to, to Anfield on a European night. It’s not like the Premier League games, and I think that’s something City underestimated.
"They thought, 'We’ve been there in the league before, we’re used to it, it might not be that special', but it’s completely different on a Champions League night, and I think it might have surprised them.
"We used it to our advantage and the manager wanted us to play the way we play. To press them high and to play football, and that’s what we did.
"We made it as hard as possible for them and they never made any clear-cut chances. That’s what we wanted to do, but it was always going to be hard to limit such a lethal attacking force like Man City. The boys pulled through it though, and the game-plan was executed perfectly.
"I remember when the third goal went in I almost had to pinch myself, because it’s pretty much unheard of, going and getting three goals in the first half of a quarter-final. You start to think, 'Wow, this is a dream come true.'
"You get caught up in the atmosphere and the emotions and it can carry you away, but like I said, the managers and the senior players in the team, while we were running back, were all shouting and telling us to focus, to get ready to go again and not to take our foot off the gas, to keep pushing for more, and that’s what we did."
The 19-year-old also rejected suggestions that he and his teammates will underestimate tonight's opponents after avoiding heavyweights Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in the draw.
He said: "They’re a huge club and a huge team. Obviously, they’ve done really well to get to where they’ve got to, and I think maybe because of the name people might be underestimating them, but that’s not what’s happening here.
"Obviously, they’re in the same situation as we are – we’re all in the semi-finals, you don’t get there by luck, you get there by hard work and grinding out results, and pulling off comebacks like they did.
"It was a special night for them in Rome, and we’ll be looking at that and analysing what they did well and what they didn’t do so well and how we can beat them over the two legs and reach the final.
"Obviously, the city of Rome plays a big part in our history, especially in the Champions League, so I guess it would be quite fitting if we could go there and secure our place in the final and get to Kyiv and get that step closer to maybe winning the Champions League."
Liverpool Ladies' New Balance home kit for the 2018-19 season was revealed today and fans can now pre-order the strip ahead of its release on Friday May 11.
The shirt, shorts and socks for next term retain the retro styling and deeper red colour scheme of the current design, which celebrates the club’s 125th anniversary year.
A tipped two-button polo collar has been reintroduced to make the shirt even more wearable, while its front features linear stripes inspired by the landmark architecture of the redeveloped Main Stand at Anfield.
Pre-order the kit in store or online now for guaranteed worldwide delivery on May 11. Junior sizes are also available.
Ladies captain Gemma Bonner said: “Wearing a shirt as famous as ours fills the team with immense pride. As Reds, wearing the Liver bird on our chest means more to us than you could even imagine.
“We’re excited to be wearing the new-look kit in July, and we expect our fans will as well.”
The club will surprise 30 supporters who pre-order any 2018-19 home shirt, selecting them at random to receive their kit for free.
Fans who pre-order a new home shirt will also receive a £10 Liverpool FC retail voucher to spend in store or online between May 11 and June 30.
Jürgen Klopp wants AS Roma to feel warmth and hospitality from Liverpool for the duration of their visit to Merseyside – but not for 90 minutes on Tuesday night.
A long-standing friendly rivalry will be reacquainted this evening when the sides contest the first leg of the Champions League semi-final.
Klopp is well aware of the history between the clubs and the special relationship that exists – and he’s keen for that to be embraced once again over the course of the last-four encounter, apart from on the pitch.
The manager wrote in his column for ‘This is Anfield’: “I would like to start these notes by offering a warm welcome to my counterpart Eusebio Di Francesco, his players, staff, the officials and supporters of this great Italian side to Liverpool.
“Rome is undoubtedly one of the world’s greatest cities and I cannot wait for our club to visit next week. I know AS Roma have been to Liverpool in the not-too-distant past, but this is a city that keeps growing and improving and I hope our visitors take some time to experience the unique warmth and hospitality that it offers.
“All true Liverpool supporters will want our guests to enjoy every single aspect of coming here except one – the match itself, the 90 minutes. As someone who has come here myself as a guest, I can tell our Italian friends this is one of the most welcoming places you could ever wish to come to, and I trust we can all embrace this feeling of friendship and make sure both matches are remembered for all the right reasons.
“Let’s embrace the joy and passion that comes with European football. Let’s embrace welcoming visitors and different cultures, which are the best values of Europe. Let’s embrace showing each other the very best qualities about our respective homes.
“Eusebio Di Francesco and his Roma team are people we have nothing but total respect for. He is a cool guy, a very talented leader and his players clearly believe in everything he is encouraging them to do. They arrive in a very good moment having won 3-0 away from home at the weekend, so their confidence is rightly high. They have the perfect blend of experience and youthful zest in their team and squad. They are the most dangerous opponent and we will have to be ready to play at our maximum for 180 minutes, minimum, if we are to even contemplate the possibility of getting through.
“I don’t think any of us need reminding of how Roma reached the semi-finals. I have been fortunate to be involved in some great European football comebacks – and Liverpool of course is a club renowned for it. However, the Roma result against Barcelona must be towards the top of any list that is drawn up on this topic. It tells me that whatever happens tonight, this semi-final will be alive and contested to the last second and kick of the game at the Stadio Olimpico. AS Roma are smart enough to know the same applies to us.
“Both sides and both clubs embody the spirit that it is never over until it is over, and that will make this intense and special I am sure. In terms of ourselves, I know the players are fully aware of the levels they’ll need to perform at.
“One of the many things I love about this team is that they manage to find that balance of respect for the opposition, without letting it diminish our own attributes. We make it about us and what we can do – but not in an arrogant way. This was very evident against Manchester City over the two legs, but also in the previous rounds.
“To be successful in a competition like this one, where every team has world-class players and is organised to the highest level, you have to always have the right mentality. You have to respect but never fear. You need confidence but never complacency. You need courage but not recklessness: be brave but not foolish. So far, with all these equations, we have found the right formula – but so have Roma until now.
“If I have one wish for these semi-final games it’s that we embrace the moment and take all the positivity from it we can, as a club, not just the first team. This campaign is about hope and not anxiety and that must remain the feeling if we are to keep progressing.”
Pick up your copy of 'This is Anfield' at the stadium tonight, or subscribe online by clicking here.
Jordan Henderson insists he and his teammates can draw inspiration from Liverpool's history as they aim to add their own names into the club's folklore in this season’s Champions League.
AS Roma visit Anfield this evening for the first leg of a semi-final tie in Europe’s premier cup competition, with Jürgen Klopp’s side aiming to secure an advantage to take to Italy for the return meeting next week.
And, as Liverpool strive to reach a first European Cup final since 2007, Henderson wrote in his notes for ‘This is Anfield’: “That desire to play and do your best for Liverpool can never be allowed to diminish. You are playing for the people of this city and beyond and when you have that honour you also have to take the responsibility that goes with it into every game you play.
“I can assure everyone that this sense of responsibility will be at the forefront of our thoughts tonight. We owe it to everyone – the supporters who back us with an intensity that goes well beyond the call of duty, the legends of the past who make this club what it is, and most of all ourselves – to give everything we can to take Liverpool to another final.
“I’m led to believe that some of the players from the 1984 team will be in attendance as guests of the club and nothing would give me greater pleasure than to captain a Liverpool team which does them proud.
“I know history can sometimes be seen as a burden but what those lads achieved is an inspiration to all of us. We all look up to them and hopefully tonight they will be looking down on us from the stands thinking we are doing justice to the legacy that they created. For that to happen, we will all have to be at our very best.
“We did fantastically well to get past Manchester City, who were deservedly crowned champions last weekend, and we will have to reach similar levels against Roma if we want to reach the Champions League final.
“I read a lot of comments after the semi-final draw saying Roma were the opponents that Liverpool wanted. I can only say that those sentiments were not shared by those of us in the dressing-room. We know all about their quality as a team, and the fact that they eliminated a Barcelona team containing Lionel Messi tells us all we need to know about the challenge we are facing.
“Finally, returning to the theme of Anfield and the supporters: whatever the outcome of this incredibly tough semi-final, we know for certain that tonight is the final home game of this season’s European campaign. On behalf of all the players I would like to say thank you for making this such an amazing home to play at.
“We never take for it for granted and we know whatever lays ahead over these two matches – and whatever awaits the winning team – the Liverpool supporters have again shown why they are part of Europe’s elite and always will be.”
Pick up your copy of 'This is Anfield' at the stadium tonight, or subscribe online by clicking here.
Jürgen Klopp will take charge of Liverpool for the 150th time when they face AS Roma in the Champions League semi-final first leg at Anfield on Tuesday night.
And the German can boast the best record of any Reds manager in their first 25 games in Europe - losing just twice.
His side have scored 56 goals in that time too, with the 39 netted in this season's Champions League, including qualifiers, a club-record haul for a single campaign.
For more need-to-know pre-match facts and figures, courtesy of club statistician Ged Rea, read on...
Liverpool have hosted Italian clubs at Anfield on 10 previous occasions, winning six times and losing four.
The Reds scored in nine of those 10 meetings, with Roma the only team to keep a clean sheet, in 2001.
Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah have both registered nine goals in the 2017-18 Champions League, which equals the club record of most goals scored in a single European campaign. Dean Saunders scored nine in five appearances during the 1991-92 UEFA Cup.
Firmino is just two goals short of recording 50 for the Reds in all competitions.
Salah's next goal will see him set a new club record by scoring in 33 different games during a single campaign - beating Ian Rush's landmark from 1983-84.
Liverpool have found the net in 13 of their last 14 Champions League games and are unbeaten during that run, winning eight games and drawing six.
The Reds have failed to score in only four of their last 35 games played at Anfield in all competitions, while they have lost only one of the last 27 home fixtures.
Salah has scored in each of the last nine home games in league and cup in which he has started, scoring 14 times in that run.
At the back, the Reds have kept six clean sheets in their last eight Champions League games.
They have not conceded a goal at home in the last five games at Anfield in all competitions - their longest run since 2006-07 when they recorded eight home shutouts in succession.
This will be Liverpool's 18th semi-final in European competition and their 10th in the European Cup.
Of the 17 they have played at Anfield they have won 13, with three draws and a single defeat - to Leeds United in the 1971 Fairs Cup.
The Reds hope to reach their 13th final and their eighth in Europe's premier club competition.
The previous time the last four of the European Cup was represented by a team from each of England, Germany, Italy and Spain was 1981. That year Liverpool lifted the trophy, beating Real Madrid in the final thanks to Alan Kennedy's goal in Paris.
This is Roma 12th season in the European Cup. They reached their only final in their debut campaign in 1983-84, when they lost to Liverpool, on penalties, at their own ground.
In England, I Giallorossi have played 19 times, winning only once - at Anfield in the 2001 UEFA Cup (1-0).
Since that victory they have not kept a clean sheet in 11 visits to the country.
Liverpool host AS Roma under the Anfield floodlights on Tuesday night as the two sides contest the first leg of their eagerly anticipated Champions League semi-final.
The eventual victor of the two-legged tie will book a final date with either Real Madrid or Bayern Munich in Kiev, Ukraine, on May 26.
The Reds have lost just one of their five previous meetings with Roma. The most famous clash with I Giallorossi came in 1984 when Liverpool took on the Italians at their own Stadio Olimpico in the European Cup final and beat them on penalties.
In the most recent encounter with Roma, during the 2001-02 Champions League second group stages, a Jari Litmanen penalty and a glancing header from Emile Heskey helped the Reds secure a 2-0 victory at Anfield.
Jürgen Klopp's side would surely settle for a repeat of that result on Tuesday night and we've picked out three key battles that could help decide the first leg in Liverpool.
Edin Dzeko v Virgil van Dijk
Target man Edin Dzeko provides Roma's main goal threat and, after netting a club-record 39 goals in all competitions last season, he's scored 20 of their 69 strikes this term.
With winger Stephan El Shaarawy next in the club standings on eight goals for the season, it could even be argued that the visitors are over-reliant on the 6'4" striker.
The 32-year-old has scored or assisted in Roma's last five Champions League games and was pivotal in their sensational aggregate win over FC Barcelona on away goals in the last round.
Dzeko netted away in the 4-1 loss at the Nou Camp and hit the opener at the Stadio Olimpico to spark the thrilling three-goal comeback against the Spanish side.
Excellent in the air and a great finisher, the Bosnian plays in the centre of an attacking trio - usually flanked by El Shaarawy and recently Cengiz Under - which allows Dzeko to concentrate his efforts in and around the area, where he is most effective.
Nullifying the former Manchester City striker would go a long way to weakening Roma and Liverpool centre-back Virgil van Dijk is likely to be the man tasked with doing just that.
The ball-playing Netherlands skipper has helped tighten up the Reds defence since his arrival from Southampton in January and leads the team with a whopping 7.7 clearances per game in the Champions League.
Also standing at 6'4" tall, the aerial and physical battle with Dzeko should be intriguing.
Mohamed Salah v Aleksandar Kolarov
Signed in the summer from Manchester City, left-back Aleksandar Kolarov has quickly become a fixture in Eusebio Di Francesco's side, featuring in 41 of Roma's 47 games in all competitions this season.
The set-piece specialist scored the winning free-kick on his debut (which certainly helps to win over the fans when you used to play for arch-rivals Lazio) and leads the team with 13 assists.
Urged to get forward down the flank in an attacking 4-3-3 system - or pushed into midfield in the 3-5-2 alternative used in the second leg against Barcelona - six of those assists have been pin-point crosses while another two have come from marauding runs into the box that have resulted in penalties.
Another three have come from free-kicks and corners.
However, the 32-year-old is likely to be lining up against Liverpool's record-breaking 41-goal forward Mohamed Salah at Anfield and it's his defensive capabilities that should be tested to the maximum.
The Serbia international will have to call on all his experience and guile to do something that few opponents have managed this season: stop Salah.
If the left-back is too busy tracking LFC's No.11 to bomb forward and augment Roma's attack, the Reds will have stemmed a key supply-line for the forwards.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain v Radja Nainggolan
Tenacious Belgian international Radja Nainggolan is renowned for his dominating displays as the powerhouse of Roma's midfield but the 29-year-old can adopt a more finessed approach when required too.
Usually lining up alongside Kevin Strootman and Daniele De Rossi in a three-man central midfield, Nainggolan has recently been pushed into a more advanced role by Di Francesco and was the driving force in the aforementioned 3-0 win over Barcelona.
Playing ahead of his usual midfield partners as part of a 3-5-2 he was available to receive the ball in attacking positions and unleash high-quality through balls or powerful shots on goal.
His alternative position also allows the imposing Belgian to hustle high up the pitch and disrupt the opposition. It worked perfectly against Barcelona and it was a role he reprised five days later in the Derby della Capitale against Lazio and again at the weekend against SPAL.
While many of Roma's first-team regulars were rested ahead of Tuesday's clash with Liverpool, Nainggolan pulled on the captain's armband and scored his fourth goal of the season in a 3-0 win over the Serie A strugglers.
It's a role not too dissimilar to that which Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain fulfils with the Reds and the duo could be in direct competition at Anfield.
Liverpool's summer signing from Arsenal can operate all across midfield, but four of his five goals for the Reds, and seven of his eight assists, have come when playing in a more central role.
Strong on the ball and capable of carrying possession from deep, the England international excelled in the quarter-finals against Manchester City when he was pitted against highly-rated Brazil midfielder Fernandinho - a player also adept at both the attacking and defensive sides of the game.