Liverpool's Jurgen Klopp will be afforded a special Anfield atmosphere on Thursday

Anfield Kop

A white-hot atmosphere is expected at Anfield as Jurgen Klopp settles in for his first home game in charge of Liverpool on Thursday.

Rubin Kazan visit Anfield in the Europa League, and what was expected to be a fixture to be endured rather than enjoyed before Klopp's arrival is now the hottest ticket in town.

The Reds have so far been sleepwalking through their European campaign with consecutive 1-1 draws away to Bordeaux and at home to Sion, but the charismatic German can be expected to be the focal point of a hero's welcome on Thursday evening.

Anfield, when the occasion calls for it, is a special place under the lights of a European game, and while a Europa League group fixture against Russian opposition does not have the same ring to it as such fixtures as the likes of Barcelona, Juventus, Chelsea and Real Madrid in recent years, it won't matter a jot when Klopp takes his first seat in the dugout of his new club.

Even the club's often absent owners Fenway Sports Group will be in attendance on Thursday, and Klopp may be tempted to hand Daniel Sturridge a start against Rubin after the England striker missed the trip to Tottenham Hotspur last week with a minor knee injury.

Klopp has insisted that the striker's absence was merely a precautionary one, and the likes of Christian Benteke, Roberto Firmino and Dejan Lovren are all back in training ahead of the game.

However, whatever first XI Klopp picks, he is calling for a "special atmosphere" - and it is a request that is likely to be heeded by the club's supporters.

Klopp told a press conference ahead of the visit from Rubin, as reported by the Liverpool Echo: "I am really looking forward to first home game and I hope we can bring a special atmosphere into the game.

"I hope the owners being here will make it more special. I've heard so much about Anfield, we are waiting for this special atmosphere."

Midfielder Lucas Leiva added: "Tomorrow is going to be really good atmosphere as a European night. We do not have any targets for season yet, but we will see where we go."

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