Sevilla raised their game to recover from a 3-0 deficit against Liverpool after their coach Eduardo Berizzo reportedly told his players at half-time he was suffering from cancer.
Reports in the Spanish media claim 48-year-old Berizzo, who took over in the summer, is suffering from prostate cancer, with his club expected to make an official announcement on Wednesday.
Sevilla’s comeback to draw 3-3 – which came after Liverpool lead through two goals from Robert Firmino and another from Sadio Mane – preserved their year-long unbeaten home record which had looked like crumbling in spectacular circumstances.
Without going public on his cancer battle, Berizzo did, however, admit he delivered a rousing team talk at half-time and it had the desired response.
“I told them that you had to play with your soul, that there is no mistake that could not be solved,” he said.
“They had to go out generating a different energy and people would believe. The team came out and infected 50,000 people,
“We took the risk of going for the game and that speaks of the football bravery of the players.”
Sevilla’s players rushed to Berizzo after Guido Pizarro scored the equaliser in injury time.
When asked about Berizzo’s health, Sevilla president Pepe Castro told Spain’s COPE radio station: “Given it is a personal and difficult subject, I would prefer to wait until tomorrow.”
Want news and features on the Reds on your Facebook timeline? Like our dedicated Liverpool page.