Venue – Puskás Aréna, Budapest, Hungary
Referee – Slavko Vincic (SVN)
Date & Time – Tuesday, February 16th 2021 @ 20:00
Current Odds – RB Leipzig 2/1, Draw 13/5, Liverpool 5/4
A possible run in the Champions League is probably one of the few potential highlights remaining in what has turned out to be a very tough season for Jürgen Klopp and his Reds. While Liverpool will no doubt be fully focused on achieving a top-four finish in the Premier League, you still wouldn’t write them off in Europe, would you?
Klopp needs some light in his life right now. To be honest, he most likely needs a break from it all to grieve the passing of his mother in peace. Yet, that’s not likely to happen. Hopefully, Henderson and his men can grab a win and take Klopp’s mind off everything else that has happened, even just for a few hours.
Come on you Redmen!
RB Leipzig Form
RB Leipzig have lost just once in their last 7 games in all competitions. They are on a four-game winning run and are currently 2nd in the Bundesliga, four points behind Bayern Munich.
Julian Nagelsmann’s side came 2nd in their Champions League group, just behind PSG on goal difference, knocking Manchester United out in the process.
After Saturday’s 3-1 defeat to Leicester, Liverpool have now lost three games in a row and six in their last 10 in all competitions.
The Reds have had to deal with an incredible amount of injuries this season and now face a tough challenge to finish in the top-four of the Premier League.
A good run in the Champions League is always possible, however. Don’t put it past Jürgen Klopp’s Reds to surprise a few people again this season in Europe, despite the injury crisis they are contending with.
RB Leipzig Team News
RB Leipzig will be missing Dominik Szoboszlai while Konrad Leimer and Benjamin Henrichs are also expected to miss out.
Winger Emil Forsberg is a doubt and will undergo a fitness test this week to decide if he can make the squad on Tuesday.
Former Liverpool goalkeeper Péter Gulácsi is likely to start between the sticks for the Bundesliga side.
Julian Nagelsmann generally uses a 3-1-4-2 shape with this RB Leipzig team with Kevin Kampl playing the anchorman role at the base of the midfield.
Liverpool Team News
Liverpool are without Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Naby Keïta, James Milner, and Diogo Jota.
Ben Davies and Fabinho will face late fitness tests but it’s hoped that both players will be available for selection.
Ozan Kabak made his Liverpool debut in Saturday’s 3-1 loss at Leicester City. I think Jurgen Klopp will select the on-loan Schalke defender at centre-half again on Tuesday. If Fabinho is back, he will partner Kabak at the heart of the back four.
That means Jordan Henderson can push back into midfield in a trio that will probably also include Thiago Alcântara and Gini Wijnaldum.
With Jota still not back in action, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, and Sadio Mané will be expected to go again in Hungary.
RB Leipzig XI (3-1-4-2) – Gulácsi; Mukiele, Upamecano, Klostermann; Kampl; Adams, Sabitzer, Olmo, Angeliño; Poulsen, Nkunku
Liverpool XI (4-3-3) – Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Kabak, Fabinho, Robertson; Henderson, Wijnaldum, Thiago; Salah, Firmino, Mané
WHEN THEY LAST MET
This will be the first meeting ever between Liverpool and RB Leipzig.
Liverpool have played 36 competitive matches against German clubs. The Reds have won 17, drawn 13, and lost 6.
RB LEIPZIG 1 – 1 LIVERPOOL
With how things are going for Liverpool, it’s hard to be confident of a win ahead of a game these days. Julian Nagelsmann is probably the best young manager to emerge in European football in the last decade and the RB Leipzig boss will relish the challenge of taking on Jürgen Klopp’s Liverpool. A score draw and an ‘away’ goal would not be a bad outcome for The Reds on Tuesday.