Reigning European champions Liverpool face a huge fight to retain their title as they take on Atletico Madrid in their UEFA Champions League last-16 second-leg at Anfield.
The Reds come into the game off the back of a slender defeat at the Wanda Metropolitano with midfielder Saul Niguez scoring the winning goal of the game. That means that Liverpool have to win the game if they harbour any hopes at all of progressing to the quarter-finals of the competition. Having reached the final in each of their last two seasons, the omens do bode well. Jurgen Klopp’s men are currently at a price of 19/20 with William Hill to progress, whilst Atleti are available at 5/6 to hold their advantage and reach the next round.
Diego Simeone’s men have found life tricky away from home in the UEFA Champions League in recent seasons. The Spaniards have only won three out of their last 14 matches away from home in the competition, losing their last two to Bayer Leverkusen and Juventus. That could explain then, alongside Liverpoool’s fantastic record on home soil, why the hosts are favourites to win the game within 90 minutes at odds of 6/10 with Betfair. Atleti sit at 6/1, whilst a draw can be backed at 11/4.
One thing that Liverpool will obviously need to do to progress is score goals and they’ve got just the tools with which to do that. Forward Mo Salah comes into the match in brilliant form having scored five goals in his last six Premier League matches. The Egyptian is the favourite to net the opening goal of the game this time around at a price of 7/2 with Paddy Power. Elsewhere, former Chelsea man Alvaro Morata, who is yet to lose against the Reds throughout his career, is the most fancied to net the opener from an Atleti perspective at 15/2.
In a significant boost to the home side ahead of the match, they can welcome back a few key players to first-team action. Jordan Henderson has returned to training so is back in contention, as is Andrew Robertson who was rested in the Reds’ recent win against Bournemouth in the Premier League. However, they will be missing regular goalkeeper Alisson so Adrian is likely to deputise once again. Elsewhere, Kieran Trippier is a slight doubt for the hosts after he was withdrawn during the draw with Sevilla. There are also reservations concerning the fitness of Thomas Lemar but Joao Felix could start after making his return last time out.