Liverpool vs Real Madrid Preview

April 13, 2021
By: Daniel Orme

Liverpool are needing a remarkable turnaround against Real Madrid if they harbour any aspirations of reaching the UEFA Champions League semi-finals.

Jurgen Klopp’s men find themselves 3-1 behind after the first-leg, Vinicius Jr. having scored a brace, with Marco Asensio and Mo Salah each also finding the net in Madrid just over a week ago.

Heading into the return leg on Merseyside, the Reds must ensure they win by at least two goals, whilst they also cannot afford Real Madrid to find the net at Anfield if they want to preserve their away goals advantage. As it stands, the hosts are the favourites to claim victory at odds of 1/1 with Betfair, whilst a draw on Merseyside sits at a price of 3/1. Meanwhile, a draw can be backed at a price of 13/5 to claim just their second-ever win at Anfield.

After the first-leg, a minimum of a 2-0 win would be enough to see Klopp’s men safely through and that result is ironically one of the most fancied with the bookies at a price of 10/1 with William Hill, whilst the Reds can be backed at 11/4 to qualify. Zinedine Zidane’s men will be confident of avoiding that particular fate considering their history in European competition. In 15 out of their last 16 knockout ties, Real have progressed having won the first leg by two or more goals. It makes sense then that the Spaniards are hugely fancied to progress at odds of 1/4.

It goes without saying then that Liverpool will certainly be needing their star players to be on top form if they want to find a route back into the tie. Predictably, Mo Salah is amongst the favourites to score the first goal of the game at odds of 11/4 with Betfred. However, Karim Benzema could actually be a better pick. The Frenchman has now scored 11 goals in his last ten La Liga games following his strike in El Clasico at the weekend. He sits at a price of 4/1 to score first at Anfield.

Despite Benzema seeming sure to take to the pitch, Zidane still has a few injury problems ahead of the trip to Anfield, specifically in defence. It has been reported that Sergio Ramos has tested positive for COVID-19, whilst Raphael Varane has suffered the same fate. The central defensive pair join the likes of Dani Carvajal, Lucas Vazquez and Eden Hazard on the sidelines.

Klopp is also suffering from very similar problems. Long-term absentees Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip are all still out, with Reds captain Jordan Henderson also remaining in the treatment room ahead of the match.

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