Liverpool – SSC Napoli: Napoli frustrate as Jürgen Klopp cannot rid his side of Carlo Ancelotti’s hoodoo (1-1)
Both sides shared their frustrations in possession, but Liverpool struggled the most, in their attempts to question a very well-organized Napoli 4-4-2 deep block. Napoli’s clinical edge gave them the advantage for the majority of the match, but it were Klopp’s changes which offered Liverpool a way back in.
Tactical analysis and match report by Peter M.
Liverpool have only suffered one defeat this season – a 2-0 away loss against none other than their opponents for this encounter. The toughest test they have faced all season, arguably, is what separated them from putting themselves through to the knockout stages with a game to spare.
In Klopp’s attempt to secure that, he made three key changes from the 2-1 victory over Crystal Palace at the weekend: Joe Gomez replaced Trent Alexander-Arnold at right back, James Milner stepped into the midfield ahead of Georginio Wijnaldum, and Mohamed Salah returned to the eleven in place of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Having drawn five of their last six games in all competitions, it is fair to say Napoli’s form has not quite resembled the quality of a side that beat the in-form team in European football. Nonetheless, league form was not of concern here; guaranteeing themselves a place in the next round was the target, which they could secure with a surprise victory.
Hindered by injuries to Lorenzo Insigne and Arkadiusz Milik, Ancelotti’s hand was forced as he made four changes from the side . . .