Venue – Anfield, Liverpool
Referee – Felix Brych (GER)
Date & Time – Tuesday, April 24th 2018 @ 19:45 BST
Current Odds – Liverpool 1/2, Draw 10/3, Roma 11/2
Liverpool drew 2-2 at West Brom on Saturday after being two goals ahead in the second half. Klopp was clearly infuriated after the game and who can blame him? The manager would have loved to take all three points and get an even stronger foothold on the top four, allowing Liverpool to focus more on the Champions League. Anfield will be absolutely bouncing on Tuesday night and Liverpool should continue their impressive European form this season with another win.
Roma had an impressive win on Saturday away to SPAL. They rotated their starting eleven and still managed a comfortable victory. In the Champions League, Roma’s last game was the fantastic 3-0 win over Barcelona. They will be confident of beating Liverpool in the second leg, no matter what the outcome at Anfield on Tuesday.
Liverpool Team News
Klopp is without Emre Can, Adam Lallana, and Joel Matip, due to injury. Nathaniel Clyne is still very much short on match fitness but may make the matchday squad. Liverpool’s strongest midfield should be Henderson, Milner, and Oxlade-Chamberlain. The front three pick themselves at this rate and they all emerged unscathed after Saturday’s game at West Brom.
Liverpool’s Top 3 Rated Players this season (WhoScored.com – 10 appearances or more)
- M. Salah ——– 7.76
- R. Firmino —– 7.46
- V. van Dijk —– 7.32
Roma Team News
Defrel and Kolarov will face fitness tests to see if they are going to be available for selection on Tuesday night. Di Francesco will most likely set Roma up in a 433 shape with morphs into 451 when out of possession. It will be interesting to see how Lovren and Van Dijk cope with Edin Dzeko. In goals for Roma, Alisson Becker will be out to impress as he plays against the team he has been most strongly linked with in recent months.
Roma’s Top 3 Rated Players this season (WhoScored.com – 10 appearances or more)
- A. Kolarov ——– 7.56
- E. Dzeko ———- 7.40
- F. Fazio ———– 7.24
Liverpool XI (4-3-3) – Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson(c), Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain; Salah, Firmino, Mané
AS Roma (4-3-3) – Alisson; Florenzi, Manolas, Fazio, Kolarov; Pellegrini, De Rossi, Strootman; Under, Dzeko, Perotti
When they last met
The last four meetings between Liverpool and Roma have been in “meaningless” pre-season friendlies. Roma have won three of those games and Liverpool just one. The last time the sides met in a competitive fixture was the 2002 Champions League Second Group Stage (yes, kids, there were two group stages in the Champions League in those days!). Gerard Houllier was present at Anfield on his return after undergoing heart surgery as Liverpool had to win by two goals to progress. A penalty from Jari Litmanen plus a second-half goal by Emile Heskey ensure Liverpool won 2-0 and made it through.
Liverpool 3 – 1 AS Roma
I do fear Roma in the second leg. How can you not after what they did to Barcelona? But that’s for next week’s match preview! This week, it’s Anfield. This week it’s the Liverpool faithful who will be making the noise and welcoming the teams in an atmosphere worthy of football’s greatest competition. I expect goals, and plenty of them. I’m backing Liverpool to take a good lead back to Rome for the second leg.
** Please note – “xGA” on the Form Stats Tables symbolises “expected goals against”