Kick-off: Wednesday, August 23 @7:45 PM GMT
Venue: Anfield (Liverpool)
Head to head record
Hoffenheim vs Liverpool 1-2 (2017/2018 Champions League)
Liverpool vs Hoffenheim prediction
Liverpool will be looking to defend their slim lead in the tie against Hoffenheim when the two teams take on each other at Anfield in the second leg of the Champions League play-offs. The Reds are a real force to be reckoned with at home, but they will have to prove their worth on the field.
No Coutinho, no problem?
Liverpool did well to finish the 2016/2017 Premier League campaign in fourth position in the standings and, as a result, they booked their place in the Champions League qualifiers. The Reds are with one foot in the group stages of the elite competition as they recorded a 2-1 win over Hoffenheim in the first leg of the play-offs at WIRSOL Rhein-Neckar-Arena. Philippe Coutinho is on the verge of leaving the club, but his replacement Mohamed Salah has been producing fine performances with Liverpool ever since he joined the Anfield outfit. The Reds head into the match following a hard-fought 1-0 win over Crystal Palace and it has to be noted that Sadio Mane scored the winner for Jurgen Klopp’s troops against the Eagles. The Senegal international is likely to pose a big threat for the opposition back line and Roberto Firmino will be yet another man to watch in the home team.
Philipe Coutinho, Adam Lallana, Nathaniel Clyne and Mamadou Sakho remain in the recovery room, but coach Jurgen Klopp has no fresh injury worries ahead of the visit of Hoffenheim. The German tactician is likely to stick to the 4-3-3 formation.
Mountain to climb
Hoffenheim kicked off the new Bundesliga campaign with a 1-0 win over Werder Bremen, but they have slim chances of booking their place in the Champions League group stages. The Bundesliga side suffered a 2-1 loss to Liverpool in front of home fans in the first leg, but you should bear in mind that key attacker Andrej Kramaric had a penalty saved in the first half of the match. Hoffenheim face an uphill task in Wednesday’s clash against Liverpool as they need to record a big win over the Premier League side at Anfield in order to advance to the group stages of the elite competition. Coach Julian Nagelsmann rested the likes of Serge Gnabry and Andrej Kramaric in the Bundesliga game against Werder Bremen, but there is every chance he is going to field the best possible side against Liverpool. Seeing that die Kraichgauer are not regarded as good travelers, away win should not be considered this time out.
Coach Julian Nagelsmann is unlikely to make too many changes to the team that faced Liverpool in Germany, but Nadiem Amiri could be recalled to the starting line-up after impressing against Werder Bremen.
- Liverpool recorded only one win in last five home games in CL
- Reds failed to keep a clean sheet in four of their last five games in all competitions
- Hoffenheim will play their first ever away game in CL against Liverpool
- It has been 12 years since Reds faced a German side in CL at home (Bayer Leverkusen)
- Sadio Mane has already netted two goals in the 2017/2018 PL season
Liverpool vs Hoffenheim betting pick
Hoffenheim have no other choice but to go all-out attack in Wednesday’s clash against Liverpool. The Reds are likely to have a number of opportunities to score on the break and seeing that the Premier League side produce thrilling performances at their Anfield, home win appears on the horizon.
Pick: Liverpool to win