Football

Porto v Liverpool Live Commentary & Result, 14/02/2018, UEFA Champions League



1′ We’re off! Liverpool get us underway, attacking from left to right.

The two sides are making their way out onto the pitch, with just a few minutes to go until kick-off.

Meanwhile, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has also made three alterations to the team that featured in their last outing, with Joel Matip, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and the suspended Emre Can making way for Dejan Lovren, James Milner and Jordan Henderson.

Sergio Conceicao has decided to make three changes to the Porto side that beat Chaves on the weekend, with Ricardo Pereira, Ivan Marcano and Yacine Brahimi coming into the starting line-up to replace Maxi Pereira, Felipe and Jesus Corona, respectively.

Liverpool substitutes: Simon Mignolet, Alberto Moreno, Joe Gomez, Joel Matip, Adam Lallana, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Danny Ings.

Liverpool XI (4-3-3): Loris Karius; Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, Virgil van Dijk, Andrew Robertson; James Milner, Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnaldum; Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane.

Porto substitutes: Iker Casillas, Maxi Pereira, Oliver Torres, Goncalo Paciencia, Yordan Osorio, Abdul Waris, Jesus Corona.

Porto XI (4-2-3-1): Jose Sa; Ricardo Pereira, Diego Reyes, Ivan Marcano, Alex Telles; Sergio Oliveira, Hector Herrera; Moussa Marega, Otavio, Yacine Brahimi; Tiquinho Soares.

There’s just under 15 minutes left to go until kick-off, so let’s have a look at how the two teams will be lining up tonight…

The visitors’ need to score means that all eyes will be on their front line, with Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino once again set to play important roles for their side. They scored 11 goals between them during the group stage and will have to be at their best tonight. Porto, meanwhile, are without in-form striker Vincent Aboubakar, who has scored 24 times this season but misses out due to injury. That could prove to be a huge blow for the hosts.

Back-to-back defeats at the end of last month were slightly concerning for Liverpool, but they head into tonight’s big clash unbeaten in three games thanks to Sunday’s easy win away to Southampton. Only one of their last 10 encounters on the road ended in a loss, and on just one occasion in the last two months have they failed to find the back of the net – something you feel they really must do this evening.

Porto are currently averaging three goals per game at home, and that could prove problematic for a Liverpool side that have struggled to keep things tight at the back this season. They only conceded six times during the group stage but five of those goals came against nearest challengers Sevilla, who managed to fight back from 3-0 down to secure a memorable draw at home to the Reds in November.

Only Besiktas have managed to beat Porto at home since Juventus did almost exactly a year ago, and all of the Portuguese side’s last eight games in front of their own fans have ended in victories. The Dragoes were thoroughly impressive in their 5-2 demolition of Monaco back in December, and they’ll be aiming to make home advantage count as they try to take a much-needed lead with them to Anfield in two weeks’ time.

Tonight’s clash brings together two sides that dazzle up front while occasionally causing panic at the back, meaning we’re set to witness a fantastic encounter. Only Paris Saint-Germain outscored Liverpool during the group stage, and the Reds were one of just four teams to head into the knockout round unbeaten. Jurgen Klopp’s men should be pushed to their limits this evening, though, as the Estadio do Dragao has proved to be an intimidating fortress in recent months.

Good evening and welcome to our live text commentary of today’s Champions League last-16 first leg between Porto and Liverpool at the Estadio do Dragao.



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