AC Milan star Andriy Shevchenko has revealed that ex-Liverpool striker Ian Rush was one of his childhood heroes.
Shevchenko is expected to carry the main threat for Milan in Istanbul
The European Footballer of the Year is expected to be the main threat to the Reds in the Champions League final.
"Rush was a terrific striker, one of the best of his time, and I'll never forget receiving a pair of boots from him at a youth tournament in Wales.
"I must have been about 14 and used to love those boots. I was a big admirer of Rush," he told Liverpool's website.
Ukraine international Shevchenko, 28, says he has long been a fan of English football, particularly the Reds.
"I used to watch Liverpool's matches as a boy on television and I continue to do so now," he explained.
"I watch a lot of Premiership football with my Milan team-mates. We are all very interested in the English game."
Shevchenko and the rest of his colleagues at the Italian Serie A club have taken even more notice of Liverpool during their run to the final.
And the striker is expecting a tough encounter in Istanbul on Wednesday.
"The fact that Liverpool have reached the final means they have deserved it," he added.
"We will not be underestimating them and must be very careful. It is obvious to me they are a very good team."