You'd have thought Liverpool's opponents would have learned by now.

Mere moments before the Reds' Champions League group opener at Anfield, a murmur spread across the stadium.

AC Milan, desperate for any advantage, were employing an age old trick on Liverpool.

Alisson Becker slowly trotted away from the Kop, as opposite number Mike Maignan headed towards him.

It soon became apparent Milan had won the toss.

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A small victory for the Italian side - but Liverpool would ultimately prevail 3-2 in an instant classic to make a winning start to this season's Champions League campaign.

Milan's efforts to unsettle the Reds served as a reminder of the mistake opposing clubs are continuing to make.

Yes, tradition dictates Liverpool would much sooner be kicking towards the Kop in the second half.

But it seems that ending the game attacking the Anfield Road End makes no difference to Jurgen Klopp's side these days.

Statistics show that almost seven years have passed since Liverpool last lost a home game when they were asked to kick towards the Kop in the first half.

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Already this season, Burnley have been beaten at Anfield after winning the toss, while Tottenham Hotspur fell last term.

Leicester City, Arsenal, Newcastle United and, in the FA Cup, Everton were defeated in 2019/20, while in 2018/19 it happened four times, with West Ham United, Paris Saint-Germain, Newcastle and Wolverhampton Wanderers all defeated.

The previous season, Manchester City were beaten in both the Champions League quarter-final and Premier League. Brighton and Hove Albion were thrashed 4-0 on the final day, although Burnley and Tottenham at least earned draws.

In 2016/17, Stoke City and Middlesbrough were beaten in the Premier League having won the toss, while West Ham United and Chelsea came away with a point.

And in 2015/16 there was a similar return, with Villarreal defeated 3-0 in the Europa League semi-final, Everton thrashed 4-0 in the league and Bournemouth beaten 1-0. Sunderland and Newcastle secured 2-2 draws.

Indeed, you have to go back to early in the 2014/15 campaign for when Liverpool last lost a home game when attacking the Kop in the first 45 minutes.

Blackburn Rovers held out for a goalless draw in the FA Cup while Burnley, Tottenham and West Ham were all beaten.

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So, who are the last team to beat Liverpool at Anfield having also won the toss?

It's Real Madrid, who won 3-0 in their Champions League group game visit in October 2014.

At least, with all three goals coming in the first half, the Kop was spared seeing the ignominious defeat – Liverpool's heaviest at home in European competition – up close.

Of course, with Anfield having become a fortress under Klopp – provided there are fans inside to watch, of course – in which direction they start the game has become somewhat immaterial.

But it's been clear for some time that winning the toss is not the advantage away teams hope it could be.