Dirk Kuyt describes the League Cup as a ‘rare competition’ as Liverpool prepare for semi-final clash with Arsenal

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Dirk Kuyt has claimed that Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool side will be ‘desperate’ to win the League Cup this season as the Reds prepare for Thursday’s semi-final first leg tie against Arsenal.

The Dutchman won the cup back in 2012 when the Anfield side defeated Cardiff City at Wembley and he’s claimed that success in the competition is a ‘great opportunity’ at an ‘important’ part of the season.

“When you reach the stage where the Wembley final is in sight, it’s something you’re desperate for. This is how I imagine Jurgen Klopp’s side will be feeling as they prepare to face Arsenal in the semi-finals,” our former No. 18 claimed in his column on the club’s official website.

“These top professionals, they don’t only want to win games, they even want to win the games in training sessions. Imagine putting a cup final at Wembley in front of them. Serial winners want to win. Simple as that. 

“The League Cup is a rare competition in a sense because you can lift the trophy partway through a season, rather than at the end. Winning it can give you a big boost of confidence at an important time in the calendar. 

“You’ve been battling for months and months to pick up vital sets of three points, but then comes the chance to add to your medal collection. It’s a great opportunity for this Liverpool team, in my opinion.”

The 41-year-old insists that Liverpool face a tough challenge to get to the final but claimed the fixture will be ‘a very interesting watch’.

“From what I’ve seen of his first few years as a coach, he learned a lot from Pep Guardiola when he was an assistant to him, and I think it says everything that Arsenal gave him the job as a young, inexperienced manager.

“Arteta, like Klopp, will know that when you play cup finals or semi-finals, it’s always just about the result. Just win. No questions asked.

“In two-legged affairs, the first fixture is sometimes a bit more tactical, like with our semi-final against Manchester City in 2012. But anything can happen across the 180 minutes. It’s difficult.  

“All that matters is that you have the better score after the two games. It’s going to be a very interesting watch.”

Following last week’s first leg postponement due to a number of ‘false positives’ amongst the Liverpool squad, a number of club’s are believed to have expressed their dismay at the decision to the EFL, but Klopp’s side are expected to avoid any investigation from the organisation.

Hopefully, we can put in a decent performance against the Gunners and have one foot in the final before our trip the north London next week.

We will ofcourse be without Mo Salah, Sadio Mane and Naby Keita as they continue to represent their countries at the Africa Cup of Nations, so game time will be provided to players eager to impress – let’s hope they can do exactly that.

READ MORE: Former Liverpool star Dirk Kuyt tips one of his ex-Anfield teammates to ‘become a very good coach in the future’

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