Opposition Analysis: Liverpool Ready for Sparta Prague Test

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Sparta Prague vs Liverpool: A Test of Strength for Klopp’s Men

Liverpool will be looking to make a huge step in their pursuit of a quadruple as they face Sparta Prague in the last 16 of the Europa League. Tonight marks the first leg of that encounter, with the Reds facing a tricky away test. With a crucial Premier League clash against Manchester City on Sunday, it’ll be interesting to see how Klopp will approach this game.

Many predict a comfortable win for Liverpool tonight, with the quality of their team being much stronger on paper, but this could easily be one a difficult one. Perhaps similar to Liverpool’s 2-0 away defeat to Red Star Belgrade in 2018, which Klopp will be looking to avoid.

Today we’re going to be taking a deeper look at Sparta Prague and the threats they could offer against Liverpool.

Recent Form

Sparta Prague come into this one in an incredible run of form, with just one defeat in their last 18 games across all competitions. Within those 18 games, they also put together a massively impressive 12 game winning streak.

Photo: IMAGO

More recently, they’ve won four and drew one of their last five games in all competitions, as they sit four points clear at the top of the Czech Fortuna Liga. Sparta are undoubtedly a strong side and shouldn’t be underestimated.

Sparta’s Journey to the Last 16

The Czech club finished second in Group C, with 10 points from their six group games. With both Rangers and Real Betis in that group, Sparta were seen as underdogs but they still managed to progress. Rangers topped that group on 11 points, therefore beating Sparta by just one point.

They were unbeaten at home, with wins against Real Betis and Aris Limassol, with a 0-0 draw against Rangers, too. After finishing second in the group, they were drawn against Galatasary in the play-off stage.

Sparta fell to a 3-2 away defeat to Galatasary in the first leg, but made a remarkable comeback in the home leg. They absolutely smashed the Turkish giants 4-1 at home, resulting in this last 16 clash with Liverpool.

Key Threats

Jan Kuchta

The 27-year-old forward has been a standout performer for Sparta so far this season, with ten goals and eight assists across all competitions. He has also managed three goals and one assist in his eight Europa League games so far and will be looking to add to that tally tonight.

Qazim Laci

Albanian midfielder Qazim Laci has been an integral part of Sparta Prague’s success this season. The 28-year-old has already made 32 appearances for the Czech outfit this season, notching two goals and eight assists from his midfield position.

Adam Karabec

Youngster Adam Karabec is one of the hottest prospects in European football, with the 20-year-old receiving interest from a number of elite clubs. Karabec has managed 22 appearances across all competitions and has scored five goals and assisted another four. The winger will be looking to cause Liverpool some issues tonight and push himself into the spotlight even more.

Score Prediction

Sparta Prague will definitely provide a tricky test for Liverpool, especially if Jurgen Klopp decides to rotate his side. It will definitely be a close contest, before the Reds will secure progression at Anfield next week.

Therefore, I’m going to lean towards a slight win for Liverpool but they will definitely be made to work for it.

Sparta Prague 1-2 Liverpool

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