Former Everton player Davy Klaassen admits being back on Merseyside to face Liverpool gives him a “special feeling” – despite his miserable time at Goodison.
Klaassen moved from the Dutch side to Everton in the summer of 2017 but made only 16 appearances before leaving for Bundesliga side Werder Bremen.
The 27-year-old returned to his former club last month and is expected to line up against the Reds in the Champions League on Tuesday at Anfield.
And Klaassen said: “It’s quite funny to be back here – I didn’t live in the city so I never really flew into this airport. I have been here before, that was the feeling I had.
“In my youth I played against Liverpool. With Everton I didn’t really play those matches so not an awful lot of experience.
“I played for Everton so it does give you that bit of special feeling but it’s been two-and-a-half years since I played here. I don’t think back with a great deal of happiness or joy, no.”
Asked to explain his disappointing spell at Goodison, Klaassen responded: “It was quite clear that it was not a good fit – me and Everton.
“I was struggling to cope with a style of play I wasn’t used to.
“It was a totally different style of play and it was just hard for me to feel a connection between my game and the game we played at the time in Everton.”
Liverpool – who won 1-0 in Holland last month – go into the game needing only a point to qualify from Group D with a game to spare, but are missing a host of key players.
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“They have quite a few injuries, key players, but they are top of the Premier League and in our group they are still at the top,” said Klaassen.
“They are slightly weaker but still a top team. This will be a splendid match and we are looking forward to it.
“Now or never? I can’t really say that but I do think we are in good shape, are ready for it. They have a lot of injuries but they still have a top team.”