Hoffenheim v Liverpool Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
August 14, 2017
Rhein-Neckar Arena - Champions League play-off
Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool travel to Hoffenheim, hoping to put one foot into the Champions League group stages with a positive result in Germany on Tuesday night.
Liverpool have never faced Hoffenheim in competitive action before, but the game will be a familiar proposition for Reds striker Roberto Firmino. The Brazilian international played for the Bundesliga side between 2011-2015, before moving to Anfield for £29 million.
Klopp will wait until the last minute before making a decision on the fitness of striker Daniel Sturridge. The Engalnd international has missed much of pre-season with a thigh injury, and he did not play in the Reds' Premier League opener against Watford on Saturday.
Midfielder Philippe Coutinho also misses out with a back injury, although Klopp may have reservations about playing the Brazilian anyway given reports that he has submitted a transfer request and looks set for a move to Barcelona.
Fellow midfielder Adam Lallana is out for two months with a thigh problem, and defender Nathaniel Clyne is not yet fit following a hamstring injury - meaning a first team spot for youngster Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Hoffenheim's main injury concern is over star striker Sandro Wagner, after he was withdrawn during a pre-season game with an ankle injury. However he returned to thew team this weekend, but the German side will make a decision on whether to start him or save him for the second leg at Anfield as his injury is not thought to be fully recovered.
Hoffenheim v Liverpool Preview and Predictions
The Bundesliga season does not get underway until this coming Saturday, but Hoffenheim have already got some competitive football under their belt ahead of the meeting with Klopp's side. They won 1-0 away at Rot-Weiss Erfurt in German Cup on Saturday as they prepare for the Champions League play-off round.
Liverpool kicked off their Premier League campaign in disappointing fashion, conceding a late goal as they drew 3-3 away at Watford, with old defensive frailties coming back to haunt them in the closing minutes.
Liverpool looked in determined to mood to return to Europe's premier competition for the first time since 2014-15, but they will find it tought against the side that finished fourth in the Bundesliga last season.
Given the Reds' poor result against Watford, a draw looks to be good option for this one, currently priced at 13/5.
Also with Liverpool looking shaky at the back, but with plenty of firepower up front in Firmino, Mo Salah and Sadio Mane- all on the score sheet against Watford- there should be goals in this game and an over 2.5 goals bet is priced at 3/4.
A 2-2 draw at 11/1
Liverpool look very likely to get a goal or two here, based on their pre-season form, but their defensive form still leaves a lot to be desired, and they will be vulnerable against the German side, particularly if Wagner plays.
Firmino to score anytime at 7/4
Firmnio from the penalty spot netted at the weekend get Liverpool back into the game at Watford, and he looks set to be a leading light for Liverpool this season, and there is unlikely to be any quarter given against his former club.