The Champions League clash between Liverpool and Atletico Madrid shouldn’t have been played, claims the Reds’ Director of Public Health, Matthew Ashton. The second leg of the Round of 16 Champions League was played at Anfield on March 11 (March 12 IST). Liverpool were knocked out of the competition by Atletico Madrid.
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While speaking to The Guardian, Matthew Ashton claimed that it was not the right decision to play the fixture against Atletico Madrid. However, he clarified that he was not raising doubts over the advice of the scientists or medical officers, because of which the game went ahead. However, he did assert that the government failed to ascertain the complexity of the situation at that time.
Ashton claimed that the game at Anfield could have been one of the events that led to the rise of the coronavirus crisis in Liverpool. He hoped that this event would be a lesson for life and something that shouldn’t be repeated in the future. Around 54,000 people attended the game at Anfield on March 11.
The first leg of the UCL clash between Atletico Madrid and Liverpool was played at the Wanda Metropolitano. At that point in time, the situation of coronavirus in Spain didn't quite hit the roof. Diego Simeone's men scored the only goal of the night after Saul Niguez scored in the 4th minute. Liverpool failed to score and then looked to win the tie at Anfield.
The second leg of the clash was a more exciting contest as the two sides strived hard to progress to the quarter-final. The game was decided by extra-time play after a 1-1 tie in the initial 90 minutes. However, a brace from Atletico Madrid midfielder Marcos Llorente and a goal from Alvaro Morata led to Liverpool being knocked out of the competition.