Richard Buxton: A night that Anfield will never forget
Klopp hailed after masterminding Reds' miraculous comeback
Juergen Klopp may have just shown himself to be football's great unifier.
Pundits love him, opposing managers respect him and even neutral fans are now won over.
No other manager in the world game has generated such universal goodwill as the German is currently enjoying, after steering Liverpool to a second consecutive Champions League final.
An improbable 4-0 victory over Barcelona yesterday morning (Singapore time), which helped the Reds overturn a 3-0 semi-final first-leg deficit, has left zero room for debate as to who is the English Premier League's Manager of the Year.
In a city where Margaret Thatcher's legacy continues to be viewed with rightful disdain, Klopp has succeeded where the late British Prime Minister failed.
He has restored harmony at Anfield where discord previously existed and delivered hope from the pits of despair.
Even a satire website has jumped on the bandwagon, suggesting that the Reds manager should tackle Brexit next, after transforming an utterly hopeless situation into glorious victory.
Given his strong public views on the subject, the powers that be might do well to take those opinions on board.
Few gave his side any chance of overturning a three-goal deficit against the La Liga champions.
Lionel Messi was destined to lift the famous trophy in Madrid at the start of next month.
Devoid of Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino through injury, Liverpool were down and out.
Or so everyone thought.
But Bill Shankly's famous declaration that the two best teams on Merseyside were Liverpool and Liverpool Reserves rang true.
Divock Origi supplemented the shortfall of his attacking cohorts with a brace that will rank as vital as a succession of late winning goals this season.
Like Anfield's modern godfather, Klopp is also a man of socialist principles.
He sees football in the same way he views life and Liverpool continue to reap the rewards of collective strength.
They dug deep to routinely suffocate Barca and stifled Messi's creativity at will.
Klopp has instilled an emotional connection in his players; harnessing the raw emotion of an imposing home crowd throughout his first 3½ years at the helm.
However, there is also a streetwise element to them, typified by Trent Alexander-Arnold's swiftly taken corner in the 79th minute.
Messi's sweetly struck free-kick in the first leg, just six days prior, carried all the hallmarks of pomp and ceremony.
Alexander-Arnold has never been one to indulge in frills. Just as well.
Barcelona were caught out by the homegrown defender doing a dummy before feeding the ball to Origi to score Liverpool's vital fourth goal.
For all their footballing intelligence and serial success, they were undone by a move that was honed on the streets of West Derby.
Smart thinking was not exclusive to Alexander-Arnold, either.
Klopp's decision to send on Georginio Wijnaldum in place of a struggling Andy Robertson proved inspired.
With James Milner reverting to left-back, the Dutchman pulled back another goal within nine minutes of his introduction. Just 122 seconds later, Mission Impossible became a reality when Wijnaldum scored his second goal.
More may be yet to come, too, from a season which threatened to peter out empty-handed.
New life has been breathed into Liverpool's bid to end a 29-year wait for the EPL title.
Fine margins continue to separate them from Manchester City in the battle for supremacy, but could the champions make a misstep at Brighton & Hove Albion and allow the Reds to pip them at the post?
In a week where Anfield has witnessed its greatest night, only a fool would rule it out.
LIVERPOOL: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, van Dijk, Robertson (Wijnaldum 46), Henderson, Fabinho, Milner, Shaqiri (Sturridge 90), Mane, Origi (Gomez 85)
BARCELONA: Ter Stegen, Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Alba, Vidal (Arthur 75), Busquets, Rakitic (Malcom 80), Messi, Suarez, Coutinho (Semedo 60)
Liverpool have reached their ninth European Cup/Champions League final - only Real Madrid (16), AC Milan (11) and Bayern Munich (10) have featured in more.
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