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Liverpool face tricky trip to Italy in the Champions League match

Last updated: October 3, 2018 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Wednesday, 20:00
Venue: San Paolo Stadium
Coverage: BT Sport
Home Form: WDWWL
Away Form: WWWLD
Last Meeting: Liverpool 3 – 1 Napoli
Competition: UEFA Champions League

Napoli will host the Premier League leaders in the UEFA Champions’ League Group C encounter. Liverpool sit on top after their famous win against French Giants PSG and will be confident as they travel to the San Paolo stadium. Napoli failed to capitalise on their chances in Serbia against 1990-91 European winners Crvena Zvezda (Red Star Belgrade) and could only manage a draw. Carlo Ancelotti’s side now need a result against a dominant and stable Liverpool side to keep their knockout stage hopes alive.

Napoli are currently the second best team in Italy, chasing Juventus at the top of the table. They however lost to Juventus 3 – 1 over the weekend in a classic match and finished the game with ten men after Rui was red carded. The Italian outfit have been in good form and haven’t dropped a point on their own turf. They will be hoping their new boss and former Real Madrid, Chelsea, and Bayern Munich manager, Carlo Ancelotti, delivers on his European pedigree that saw him conquer the Champions League on three occasions; twice with Milan and once with Real Madrid. Ancelotti possesses a good knowledge of Premier League teams from his time at Chelsea and will need to tap into this knowledge to challenge Liverpool.

Liverpool – five-times winners of the competition – have had their best ever start with seven straight wins in all competitions. Their most impressive win so far came in the Champions League when they got maximum points against French giants PSG. In what was a clash between the potential winners of the group, the Reds struck first through Sturridge before Milner doubled the lead. PSG came back into the match through wonder boy Mbappe and Thomas Meunier’s classic volley to put the score level. Roberto Firmino came off the bench to score the winner.

Liverpool are top of the group and will be confident of getting a result over an opponent they have only ever faced twice. Despite their great form, Chelsea have shown that Liverpool are not invincible. The Stamford Bridge side knocked them out of the Carabao Cup 2-1 courtesy of a stunner from Eden Hazard. The league meeting between the pair ended in a 1-1 draw. Jürgen Klopp’s team selection will be interesting as Liverpool face champions Manchester City at the weekend.

Team News

Napoli have a great squad going forward led by Italian Lorenzo Insigne who has 5 goals in 7 appearances in Serie A.

Carlo Ancelotti welcomes Liverpool who were his bitter rivals in his time at Chelsea.

Liverpool face Champions Manchester City in the weekend in a clash of the titans match. Klopp will surely have one eye on that game, which could affect his team selection here.

Salah is struggling to replicate last season’s form. The 26-year old scored 44 goals last season but was substituted early in the second half against Chelsea.

Expected Line-Ups:

Napoli (4-4-2): Ospina, Hysaj, Albioli, Koulibaly, Rui, Callejon, Allan, Hamšík, Zielinski, Mertens, Insigne
Subs: D’Andrea, Fabian, Luperto, Maksimovic, Rog, Milik, Diawara, Verdi
Injured: Ghoulam, Meret, Chirches
Not available:
Liverpool (4-3-3): Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson, Milner, Wijnaldum, Henderson, Salah, Firmino, Mané
Subs: Mignolet, Keita, Sturridge, Moreno, Fabinho, Shaqiri, Lovren
Injured: Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lallana
Doubtful: Lovren
Not available:

So Far This Season

. . .
Napoli This Season Liverpool This Season
3rd League Position 1st
0 (0) Wins (away) 1 (0)
Biggest Win 3 – 2 v PSG
0 (1) Draws (away) 0 (0)
Biggest Defeat
Top Goal Scorer Sturridge (1) Milner (1) Firmino (1)
Y1, R0 Discipline Y4, R0
100% Failures to Score 0
100% Clean Sheets 0%
0% Both Teams to Score Games 100%
0% Over 2.5 Goals 100%
100% Under 2.5 Goals 0%
  • If league form is replicated this game should have goals. Napoli have had 75% of their games with over 3 goals, for Liverpool it is 56%.
  • There have been just two competitive matches in this fixture. The first was a goalless draw, while the second was a Steven Gerard inspired comeback to win 3 – 1.
  • Napoli have managed just two clean sheets while Liverpool managed three consecutive clean sheets in their first three matches in the domestic leagues.
  • Liverpool have a chance to go six points clear of expected group challengers PSG. Napoli and Crvena Zvezda both have one point.

Head to Head

Last 5 meetings between the two sides
Date Competition Game Result First Goal-scorer
04/11/2010 Europa League Liverpool 3 – 1 Napoli Lavezzi 28’
21/10/2010 Europa League Napoli 0 – 0 Liverpool

Conclusion & Betting Tips

The lack of history between the two sides makes this an intriguing encounter. Liverpool have in the past struggled against Italian sides. In the 25 matches against Italian teams they have won 9, drawn 5 and lost on 11 occasions, scoring 27 and conceding 28, but many of those results were against Juventus and AS Roma.

There is a danger that Liverpool will have one eye on the weekend fixture with Manchester City, so expect early substitutions if they build up a lead. However, we still feel there will be plenty of goals in this game. Our prediction for this fixture is over 2.5 goals, while adventurous punters may even be tempted with over 3.5 goals. You can find the best odds at 888sport.