Napoli host Liverpool on Wednesday night at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona in the UEFA Champions League. These sides last met in 2019 as the match finished 1-1 at Anfield in the group stages of this competition. The Partenopei have made an unbeaten start to the Serie A season with 11 points from five matches and 12 goals scored but star striker Victor Osimhen is doubtful to play.
Napoli made it to the last 16 of last season’s Europa League. They reached the same stage of the 2019-20 Champions League before being knocked out by Barcelona. They’ve been good this season so far in the league. A 5-2 win at Verona on an opening day was followed by a 4-0 home win against Monza.
The side then drew consecutive matches, 0-0 at Fiorentina and 1-1 at home with Lecce, having led 1-0. Over the weekend, they got a fine 2-1 win in Rome at Lazio as Kim Min-Jae and Khvicha Kharatskhelia got the goals.
Napoli Team News
Up front, striker Victor Osimhen picked up a knock against Lazio but saw out the 90 minutes. He is touch-and-go to be fit for this match. Speedster Hirving Lozano is another injury concern as he was taken off in the first half over the weekend. Midfield Diego Demme remains absent with injury.
On-loan midfielder Tanguy Ndombele and Elif Elmas are pushing for inclusion but Luciano Spalletti has a solid midfield trio of Franck Anguissa, Stanislav Lobotka and Pioti Zielinski which could keep their spots. Matteo Politano could come into the XI if Osimhen is absent with Khvicha Kvaratskhelia perhaps as the central forward.
At home, Napoli will play to win knowing the difficulty of having Liverpool and Ajax in their group and a super tough away fixture at Rangers too.
Full attention will be on this game and the side will attack in stages of the match with their vocal supporters behind them. A draw would not be a disaster but isn’t a result they will play for initially.
It hasn’t been the best start to the season for the Reds. They have won just two of their six Premier League matches up to this stage. They began with successive draws, 2-2 at Fulham and 1-1 at home to Crystal Palace before losing 2-1 at Man Utd. Two wins in a row followed as they destroyed Bournemouth 9-0 before a last-gasp winner to beat Newcastle 2-1 at Anfield.
Their last match saw a 0-0 draw at Everton in the Merseyside derby. Klopp’s team hit the woodwork three times but also allowed some big opportunities for their opponents. Liverpool won all six of their group stage matches in last season’s Champions League and reached the final, where they lost 1-0 to Real Madrid after squandering a number of clear chances.
Liverpool Team News
The Reds have a bit of crisis in midfield where Jordan Henderson is out injured and Fabio Carvalho is a doubt after an injury against Everton. Both Naby Keïta And Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have been left out of Liverpool’s Champions League squad altogether. Arthur Melo arrived on loan from Juventus and could make his debut.
Thiago Alcantara is back in training but this match may come too soon for him, meaning James Milner could start. Ibrahima Konate is injured in defence but Joel Matip could return to partner Virgil Van Dijk. Andy Robertson should earn a recall after being dropped at Goodison Park.
Liverpool needs a win and will play an attacking style of look for all three points. They were outstanding in this competition last season at beat both AC Milan and Inter Milan in Italy.
If the scores are level, expect to see Roberto Firmino or fit-again Diogo Jota to be thrown on as extra forwards to try to get a win.
Napoli are unbeaten in 8 home CL matches (W5, D3)
Napoli have won 7 of their last 9 Serie A matches (D2)
Napoli have won their last 2 home CL matches against Liverpool (2018 & 2019)
Liverpool have won 2 of their 6 matches this season (D3, L1)
Liverpool have won their last 6 away CL matches (excludes neutral venues)
Liverpool have scored 18 goals in their last 6 away CL matches
Liverpool’s Salah scored 8 CL goals last season
This should be a very good match, especially because Liverpool look to have some issues in each department this season because of injuries and the departure of Sadio Mane. Napoli have been scoring freely and will hope to have Osimhen fit to start. If he is fit, they should score. If he misses out, backing a Reds clean sheet could be wise.
Best Bet: Liverpool win at 2.00
Value Bet: Liverpool win and Both to Score at 3.50
Scoreline Tip: Napoli 1-3 Liverpool at 14.00
Alternative Bet: Liverpool win and Salah anytime scorer at 3.75
Multiplier Leg: Liverpool Win/Draw double chance + over 2.5 goals at 2.25