UCL: Predictions And Predicted Lineups For Liverpool And Arsenal Matches Tonight

On one hand, Liverpool is back into the UEFA Champions League after five long years, while on the other hand, Arsenal made it, by the skin of their teeth, into the Champions League group stages for the 17th consecutive time. From last year to this year, Liverpool have replaced Manchester United in the Champions League group stages, as Chelsea, Manchester City and Arsenal have repeated their progress into the CL group stages.

Liverpool
Liverpool

Arsenal and Liverpool both play their first UCL group stage games today, and both Arsenal and Liverpool will want to win their respective games, so that they can show that they mean business, after the efforts both sides have made to reach here. Their first games pose varying levels of difficulty for both sides, as Liverpool face Ludo, and Arsenal face Dortmund. Both are potentially tricky fixtures, and the English sides would do well to concentrate, put their heads into the game and put up a good show.

Looking at the Liverpool game, most of their players are inexperienced at the Champions League level. Their players will look to use this game to build themselves up to face trickier opposition such as FC Basel and Real Madrid in the next few games. Raheem Sterling, Simon Mignolet and Jordan Henderson will look to prove themselves at the top level required to play at this magnitude. Liverpool’s icon in the UCL, Gerrard will have to lead from the front and spur the team on. Players like Balotelli and Markovic will have to use their past UCL experience to guide the rest of their team forward. Sturridge and Allen may be absent for the game, but the rest of the team can deliver in their absence and give Liverpool a flying winning start in their first game in the UCL in a long time. This looks like an easy fixture, and a Liverpool win is expected, but overconfidence could bring them down if they are not careful, as Ludo are more than capable of springing a few surprises if given an opportunity.

Predicted Liverpool lineup: Mignolet – Johnson, Lovren, Sakho, Enrique – Gerrard, Henderson – Lallana, Sterling, Coutinho – Balotelli

ramsey arsenal

Arsenal face Dortmund, in a repeat of last year’s matches, in which Arsenal outclassed Dortmund over both the home and away legs. This year, Dortmund look sharper and faster, and one can expect an attack of Immobile, Kuba, Reus (if fit) and a returning Kagawa will want to prove that they are more than capable of challenging for the title. Kagawa started off fantastically in his first game for Dortmund upon his return, with a goal and an assist, as he slotted back into the team, looking to forget his Manchester United nightmare. Arsenal will depend upon their experienced centre-backs: Mertesacker and Koscielny, to put an end to quick Dortmund counters. Mertesacker will have to be at the top of his game, or he will be exposed fit his lack of pace by blitzkrieg-like Dortmund attacks. Flamini will have to restrict Kagawa’s movement, while the onus will be on Sanchez, Welbeck and Podolski (of he plays) to score and give Arsenal a win.

Predicted Arsenal lineup: Viviano – Debuchy/Chambers, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Monreal – Flamini – Sanchez, Ramsey, Cazorla, Podolski – Welbeck

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