Anfield legend John Barnes believes Jurgen Klopp has brought back Liverpool’s identity, unity and belief.
All that is missing is silverware as Klopp has yet to deliver a trophy during his four years at the club.
Barnes would be confident that drought would end tonight if Ajax were Liverpool’s Champions League final opponents.
That it is Tottenham in the final following their remarkable fight-back from 3-0 down against the Dutch in the semis, complicates matters for Barnes.
His heart says his beloved Liverpool, where he spent a decade – his head is not so sure.
Barnes, 55, said: “Jurgen Klopp has brought an identity back to the club along with a belief and a togetherness.
“If it was against Ajax in the Champions League final I would have made Liverpool clear favourites.
“However, with it being two English teams going against each other it is not so clear.
“Liverpool are a strong side, but so are Tottenham and they are both capable of beating one another.
“Liverpool were fortunate to beat them in both Premier League games this season.
“It is all about who turns up on the day and has that bit of luck.
“This will be a very open final but obviously I am hoping for Liverpool to win.”
Should Liverpool emerge from the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid with the Champions League trophy tonight it will be a reward for a remarkably consistent season.
If they suffer a second successive Champions League final defeat it will deliver another devastating blow in a season which promised so much yet ultimately delivered nothing.
Liverpool lost out on the Premier League title to defending champions Manchester City despite registering 97 points and losing just one league game over the 38-game season.
It has been a case of so near but yet so far for Klopp and silverware during his four-year tenure at Anfield.
Last season he finished runner-up in the Champions League having lost the final to Real Madrid.
Liverpool also lost the 2016 Europa League final to Sevilla and the League Cup final to Manchester City that season.
Barnes said: “You cannot ask for any more of Liverpool.
“They got 97 points in the league and they are in the Champions League final.
“In the Premier League they only lost one game which is hardly a setback.
“Yet people say what do they need to improve for next season.
“How can you improve on their season?
“The only way you can improve on that is not to lose any games which is unrealistic because the English Premier League is so tough.
“When you look at the other teams they were all losing games left right and centre apart from Liverpool and Manchester City.
“Liverpool are in a fantastic place but unfortunately for them so are Manchester City.
“All they can do is hope Manchester City don’t do as well as they did this season.
“Because I doubt if Liverpool will get 97 points in the new season.
“That doesn’t mean that would be failure but it is just they have had a phenomenal season this time.”
English Premier League teams have monopolised the European finals this season as Chelsea this week defeated Arsenal 4-1 in the Europa League final in Baku.
It is the first time all four finalists in Europe’s top two competitions have come from one nation.
There have only been two all-English finals before, with Tottenham beating Wolves in the 1971-72 Uefa Cup.
Manchester United also defeated Chelsea in the 2007-08 Champions League final.
Spain had three teams in the finals of the two competitions in 2015-16, with Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid contesting the Champions League final.
Sevilla, then managed by current Arsenal boss Unai Emery, won the Europa League.
Barnes said: “Having all four European finalists shows the strength of the English Premier league which has always been competitive and strong.
“However, I never felt the English teams at the highest level could compete with Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Paris St Germain.
“That was until the last year or two.
“Now the English teams can compete at that level and that is mainly because of the two managers that have come over in Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola.
“They have the power to make these teams stronger because of the financial clout they have.
“If you look at the Europa League with Chelsea and Arsenal who are teams that could be in the Champions League they are very strong as well.”
John Barnes will appear at the Fearnley International Open at Newmachar Golf Club on Friday June 14.
It is the first international event on the hugely popular DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series 2019.
The golf day will be followed by a celebrity charity dinner at the Ardoe House Hotel.
It is raising money for CLAN Cancer Support (clanhouse.org), a local-based cancer charity.