Porto will receive the English side on February 14th of 2018 to begin the direct elimination series. Liverpool’s 23 goals in the group stages sets them as slightly probable to win. Only PSG netted more goals in this tournament so far. Experts expect an aggressive Liverpool to score some goals in their away game.
Porto is one of the weak contenders during this round of elimination, they conceded 10 goals during the group stages despite being in a weak pool. Advanced second to Sevilla and got paired with a menacing Liverpool.
Expect Porto to chicken into their own field after the initial 15 minutes, they will try to take control of the game at first but if that fails they will have no other option but to retreat and hold off the aggressive Liverpool side to make changes during halftime.
Porto Betting Odds
Porto has historically been the second or third best squad from Portugal, under their rivals Benfica or even Sporting. Last time they lifted the Champions League trophy was in 2004, but the current team is not in the best of their moments.
Vincent Aboubakar, the Cameroon striker is a player to keep an eye on, he scored 5 goals during the group stages. So he holds most of the team’s strike power.
For the most part Porto is strong at home, so Liverpool won’t have it easy. They won their games against Monaco and Leipzig with 3 goals on each. But received the same amount of goals in the away match against Besiktas.
Liverpool can exploit those defensive fallacies and snatch an away win with 2 goals minimum.
Liverpool’s Betting Odds
Five-time champions Liverpool was more solid in their group. The only drawback to mention were the 2-2 and 3-3 draws against Sevilla, however they won every other game that followed with over 10 goals in the total in the games against Maribor and winning 7-0 against Spartak Moscow.
Jurgen Klopp manages an effective fast paced game with a certain aggressiveness that seems to be reserved mostly for the Champions League matches.
Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino all contribute to a powerful attack that should overcome Porto’s fragile defense with ease.
Historically Liverpool has always scored a draw in the away game in Portugal, with recent scores at 1-1 and 0-0. At home they have always won by more than two goals. This away trend could change given the big differences in skill both teams are presenting right now. Most of those historical games happened in an era when Porto was more of a threat.
Team News – Recently Liverpool has taken a shocking loss against Swansey in the Premier League despite dominating most of the match. New players may join the team, Trent Alexander Arnold and Ragnar Klavan will be available for selection. Jordan Henderson and Alberto Moreno are injured and may not be ready for the match. Dominic Solanke and Mohamed Salah will be returning to the main team in the next games and Roberto Firmino will be rested in the domestic clashes.
Porto on the other hand has been slapped with some really bad news, midfielder Danilo suffered a leg injury in a domestic clash that will leave him out from the first home clash of the Champion’s. This happened during the local league semifinals, getting eliminated from a top tournament is always a huge team demotivation.
Prediction – Expect an away win from Liverpool with an over score of 2.5 goals in total. Most of the action should be happening in the second half of the game when the English side have tested Porto’s weaknesses during the first.
Odds for the game stand at Porto 2/1, Liverpool 6/5 According to williamhill.com