STAR PREVIEW: Liverpool v Red Bull Salzburg

Liverpool haven’t lost a home game in Europe since October of 2014 and the market doesn’t expect that to change with the visit of Red Bull Salzburg, but the visitors pack a punch and this could be a fiery encounter at Anfield this evening.

Liverpool fell to an opening matchday defeat against Napoli when Dries Mertens’ penalty and a late Fernando Llorente goal saw them lose 2-0, so this is already a crucial game for the Merseysiders. Liverpool struggled to impose themselves at the Sao Paolo stadium, but that was the case last season in Europe when they lost all three group games on the road and they should be more fluent here.

Liverpool v Red Bull Salzburg
UEFA Champions League Group Stage
20:00 BT Sport 3 HD / BT Sport Ultimate

(Maximum 10 matches, Since 2000)
1st Meeting

In the Premier League, Liverpool have blazed a trail, starting even more quickly than last season. Their 1-0 win against Sheffield United was their sixth straight success in the league so far and across those successes they are averaging three goals a game.

The majority of those goals have come from the fabulous front three of Mohamed Salah (4 goals), Sadio Mane (4) and Roberto Firmino (3), and they were also a menace in European competition too.

Salah scored three group stage goals last season whilst Firmino grabbed three for himself, two against Red Star Belgrade, and nearly all those goals came at home, an encouraging sign for tonight.

Salzburg are not to be underestimated. The Austrians are league leaders at home, having won eight of their nine games to sit five points clear, and they proved they can mix it at this level when they smashed Genk 6-2 on the opening matchday.

Jesse Marsch has a young side and it is very capable – led by the incredibly imposing Erling Braut Haaland, who has scored 17 in ten matches (yes you read that right) this season, including a hat-trick against Genk. Liverpool will also need to be wary of Sekou Koita and Masaya Okugawa, both of whom put Austria Vienna to the sword on Saturday.

This may be a step up in class, but the rate of scoring for Salzburg has been truly remarkable. Of the 11 matches they’ve played this season in all competitions, nine (yes, nine) of those went over 3.5 goals.

Liverpool have seen three games at Anfield go over 3.5 goals and it’s worth noting that they’ve conceded in all but three games this season, one of them being a third round EFL Cup tie at MK Dons. Over 3.5 goals could once again be the way to go.

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