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Liverpool vs Napoli. UEFA Champions League Group E.


Liverpool 1

  • D Lovren (65th minute)

Napoli 1

  • D Mertens (21st minute)

Liverpool vs Napoli: Champions League preview

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Xherdan Shaqiri
Image: Xherdan Shaqiri could be in line for a return to the squad after calf problems

Team news, stats and prediction as Liverpool face Napoli in the Champions League.

Team news

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp provided some positive news regarding the fitness of Joel Matip, revealing at his press conference that the Cameroon centre-back is closing in on a return following a knee injury.

Xherdan Shaqiri could be included in the squad having now recovered from a calf problem, while Andrew Robertson has not suffered any recurrence of an ankle injury after playing 90 minutes of the 2-1 win over Crystal Palace.

Napoli could be without Arkadiusz Milik and Lorenzo Insigne due to stomach and elbow problems respectively, while Kevin Malcuit is a long-term absentee due to ligament damage.

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Jurgen Klopp says he's not worried about Mohamed Salah's fitness with the Liverpool boss revealing he has two phones to help his preparations

State of play

Victory over Carlo Ancelotti's side will ensure Liverpool finish top of Group E with a game to spare but Klopp insists his team cannot afford to look past this match.

Napoli are the only team to beat them inside normal time this term and the Italians know that a win of their own would secure their place in the knockout rounds.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Liverpool's 2-1 win against Crystal Palace in the Premier League

Opta stats

  • Liverpool have won both of their home European games against Napoli, winning 3-1 in the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League and 1-0 in last season's UEFA Champions League.
  • In all European competition, this will be Napoli's 10th away match in England - they've won none of their previous nine (W0 D1 L8), facing six different English teams in that time (Arsenal, Burnley, Chelsea, Leeds United, Liverpool and Man City).
  • Since losing 2-0 to Napoli on MD1, Liverpool have won each of their last three UEFA Champions League games - the Reds haven't won four consecutively since March 2009.
  • Napoli's José Callejón created 11 chances in their 1-1 draw with FC Red Bull Salzburg on MD4 - the most by a player in a UEFA Champions League match since Mesut Özil created 12 for Real Madrid against Tottenham in April 2011.
  • Liverpool's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has scored in his last two UEFA Champions League appearances - the only Englishman to score in three in a row for the Reds is Steven Gerrard (five in a row in 2007-08).
  • Napoli manager Carlo Ancelotti was the last manager to win an away UEFA Champions League match at Anfield against Liverpool, leading Real Madrid to a 3-0 win in October 2014. No manager has won more away Champions League games in England than Ancelotti (3 - level with José Mourinho and Massimiliano Allegri).
  • Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has lost three UEFA Champions League games against Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti, his joint-most against an opposing manager along with Arsène Wenger. However, Klopp has won both home games against Ancelotti (Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Real Madrid in 2014 and Liverpool 1-0 Napoli in 2018).
  • This is Napoli's 82nd away match in major UEFA European competition - they've only managed consecutive away victories once, winning three in a row in November 2015 in the Europa League.

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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has joked he would swap his Premier League title for Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp's Champions League trophy

Charlie's prediction

This is another cracker. These two will go through, but Napoli do not lose many games. They are still unpredictable in terms of their defence. They are powerful but, no matter who the manager is, Napoli do like to get at you and take a risk or two.

Also See:

Liverpool are getting over the line at the moment, but it is taking its toll. Do you risk Mohamed Salah again or do you play him against Brighton on Saturday? I have a feeling Liverpool may tinker the team and if you said to both clubs that they would get a point, be content, and qualify at the end of it, they would be more than happy. Liverpool changes may affect the team.

CHARLIE PREDICTS: 1-1 (15/2 with Sky Bet)

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