Lescott's emphatic response to whether Liverpool can win the Champions League this season

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp looking focused

Former England international Joleon Lescott expects Liverpool to challenge for the Champions League this season.

What has Lescott said about Liverpool's chances in the Champions League?

With the Champions League returning this week, Liverpool appear to be going under the radar in terms of being talked about as one of the sides that can win the competition outright. This may be due to Jurgen Klopp's team being placed in a difficult group alongside Atletico Madrid, AC Milan and Porto.

Still, Lescott believes that Liverpool deserve to be viewed as contenders, and when asked if they would be in the mix for European glory this season, he delivered an emphatic two-word response: "yeah definitely."

Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, he continued: "If they’re not being spoken about, they’re definitely one of the contenders, and one of the favourites. In terms of the group, yes by names it’s one of the toughest, but AC Milan, to be honest, I don’t remember the last time they were in the Champions League. So again, it’s going to be new for a lot of their players. Yes, they have Zlatan, so that will be an interesting battle in regards to van Dijk vs. Zlatan.

“But Liverpool, they’ll be the team that the other teams don’t want to face. They’ll be more wary of Liverpool. They have the experience, and with the fans being back at Anfield, that will be an intense atmosphere for all those teams to face.”

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Have Liverpool returned to their best form under Klopp this season?

It has certainly been a promising start to the season for the Merseyside club after their underwhelming campaign last year.

The side picked up convincing wins over Norwich and Burnley in their opening two matches, before dropping their first points of the season when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Chelsea at Anfield, despite the Blues being reduced to 10 men shortly before the interval.

They bounced back from that minor blip on Sunday, though, easing past Leeds 3-0 in a game that showed Klopp's side at their free-flowing best.

Liverpool 3-0 Leeds: Full reaction on The Football Terrace as Reds score three and Leeds go down to ten men!

How does their current team compare to the side which won the Champions League in 2019?

Not a great deal has changed, actually.

In fact, eight of the players who started the final in Madrid two years ago also played from the beginning on Sunday against Leeds, highlighting how Liverpool have a settled team.

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The main issue seems to be that their main rivals have strengthened significantly since 2019. Manchester City now have Ruben Dias and Jack Grealish in their ranks, Chelsea can call upon Romelu Lukaku to lead the line, and PSG have added arguably the greatest player in the history of the sport, Lionel Messi, to their squad.

With these sides improving, it appears likely that Liverpool will have to step up their game once more this year if they want to go all the way, as performing at the same level as two years ago may not get the job done.

BT Sport is the exclusive home of UEFA Champions League football. Watch every game of the 2021/22 competition live on TV, online and on the BT Sport app. For more info, visit btsport.com

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