In Review

Champions League: Liverpool vs. Bayern Munich team news, starting XIs, predictions, TV, betting odds

Jurgen Klopp says the last-16 tie against Bayern is not a ‘personal thing’

Liverpool vs. Bayern Munich
  • What: Champions League round of 16 first leg 
  • When: Tuesday 19 February 
  • Where: Anfield, Liverpool 
  • Kick-off time: 8pm (GMT) 
  • TV channel: live on BT Sport 2

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp will go up against an old rival tonight when his side host Bayern Munich at Anfield, but the German insists that the Champions League round of 16 tie is “not personal”.

Previously the boss of Borussia Dortmund from 2008 to 2015, Klopp regularly locked horns with Bayern when challenging for domestic honours in his homeland.

With Dortmund he won two Bundesliga titles and twice finished runners-up behind Bayern in the league. Bayern also won the 2013 Champions League final with a 1-0 win against Dortmund at Wembley Stadium.

Speaking ahead of the last-16 first-leg clash Klopp was asked if the Bayern factor makes it a bigger tie for him.

Quoted by Sky Sports he said: “I don’t feel like this. Obviously a couple of people called me in the last few days to say in Germany it’s going mad because of this game, but that’s how it is. Making kind of these personal battles out of it I don’t understand.

“Yes, I was manager of Dortmund and had a bit of success there, but it was always difficult to play against Bayern. To beat them was the biggest challenge you could face in German football, always. And sometimes we did it and sometimes we didn’t, but that’s pretty much all.

“So I don’t see it like a personal thing for me. It is two big clubs facing each other and I am really happy to be part of this game. It’s a big one. It is a game you want to see.” 

Kovac: Liverpool the toughest draw

Going up against Klopp will be Bayern head coach Niko Kovac. The former Croatian international says that being paired with Klopp’s Liverpool is the toughest tie his side could have been given in the last-16 draw.

Quoted by ESPN, Kovac said: “We’re playing against an opponent that’s the most difficult draw. If you look at what Liverpool did in the Champions League last season and what Liverpool are doing in the Premier League this season, then you have to say Liverpool is the most difficult draw that there is.

“Other draws would have been difficult. But I maintain that [on Tuesday] and in Munich the form on the day will be decisive.

“I don’t know if there is a favourite or not. Liverpool has respect for us as we do for them and there will be a sporting contest.”

TV and live stream details

Tonight’s match kicks off at 8pm and is live on BT Sport 2, coverage begins at 7pm. BT Sport’s website and app will also show a live stream of the Anfield clash.

The second leg between Bayern and Liverpool will be played in Munich on Wednesday 13 March. 

Team news and possible starting XIs

Liverpool team news

Defender Dejan Lovren is a doubt because of a hamstring injury. The Croatian has been out since last month and his availability is unclear for the first-leg encounter at Anfield.

Reds boss Klopp told the club’s official website that Georginio Wijnaldum and Xherdan Shaqiri have returned to training this week and “it will be be close” if the duo feature in his squad.

The Daily Mail reports that striker Roberto Firmino missed the final training session because of a virus and could also be a doubt. Virgil van Dijk is suspended and Joe Gomez is injured so Klopp could pair Fabinho and Joel Matip in central defence.

Bayern team news

Thomas Muller (suspended), Arjen Robben (thigh) and Corentin Tolisso (knee) are all definitely missing for Bayern and there’s also a doubt over defender Jerome Boateng because of illness.

Forward Kingsley Coman will have his fitness monitored after he picked up an ankle problem last week. Bayern head coach Kovac said: “He’s improving by the hour. Kingsley needs to be completely pain-free. We’re optimistic that the medical team will have him in shape.” 

Possible starting XIs

How the two teams could line up at Anfield tonight, according to the Independent.

  • Liverpool possible starting XI: Allison; Milner, Matip, Fabinho, Robertson; Wijnaldum, Keita, Henderson; Salah, Shaqiri, Mane 
  • Bayern Munich possible starting XI: Neuer, Kimmich, Sule, Hummels, Alaba, Thiago, James, Goretzka, Gnabry, Coman, Lewandowski

Predictions

London Evening Standard: “Bayern conceded only five times in six matches during the group stage, but Liverpool are a formidable scoring force at Anfield and their chances of keeping a clean sheet to take back to Munich seem very slim indeed. There are plenty of goals in both teams and Robert Lewandowski will fancy his chances of exploiting a significantly understrength home defence to add to his tally of eight scored in this year's tournament so far. Prediction: 2-2.” 

Charlie Nicholas, Sky Sports: “There have been a few questions about Liverpool recently and they are without Virgil van Dijk for the home leg, but Bayern are not as good as they have been in recent years. Thomas Muller is out, although I don’t think that will make a huge difference, and Kingsley Coman, who has found some form, suffered a knock in their game on Friday. Bayern are well-drilled but at the back you can get at them and Liverpool’s front three are a handful for anybody. Prediction: 3-1.” 

Liverpool vs. Bayern betting odds

All prices according to Oddschecker, as of 19 February. 

First-leg match betting
  • Liverpool to win: 11/10 
  • Bayern to win: 5/2 
  • Draw: 13/5 
To qualify
  • Liverpool: 10/11 
  • Bayern: 1/1
To win the Champions League
  • Liverpool: 9/1 
  • Bayern: 14/1

Champions League results, fixtures and TV guide

Last-16 first-leg results
Tuesday 19 February: first-leg fixtures
  • Liverpool vs. Bayern Munich (8pm, live on BT Sport 2) 
  • Lyon vs. Barcelona (8pm, live on BT Sport 3)
Wednesday 20 February: first-leg fixtures
  • Atlético Madrid vs. Juventus (8pm, live on BT Sport 3) 
  • FC Schalke vs. Manchester City (8pm, live on BT Sport 2)
Last-16 second leg fixtures Tuesday 5 March
  • Borussia Dortmund vs. Tottenham Hotspur (0-3 on aggregate; 8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Real Madrid vs. Ajax (2-1 on aggregate; 8pm, live on BT Sport)
Wednesday 6 March
  • FC Porto vs. Roma (1-2 on aggregate; 8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Paris Saint-Germain vs. Manchester United (2-0 on aggregate; 8pm, live on BT Sport)
Tuesday 12 March
  • Juventus vs. Atlético Madrid (8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Manchester City vs. FC Schalke (8pm, live on BT Sport)
Wednesday 13 March
  • Barcelona vs. Lyon (8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Bayern Munich vs. Liverpool (8pm, live on BT Sport)

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