Liverpool won their contest in the previous round, courtesy of a fantastic free-kick from Trent Alexander-Arnold and a Mohamed Salah penalty, and anything but a win in Scotland would significantly reduce their chances of landing a spot in the knockout stages. But if the Merseysiders do win, it’ll be the end of Rangers in the competition will likely be mathematically confirmed.
In the other match of the group on the evening, Napoli host Ajax after thrashing the Dutch champions in Amsterdam the last time out.
There was never much hope for Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s team to move past the group stage in the Champions League, and there probably wouldn’t be any difference had they been drawn in some other group. Realistically speaking, the fact that they’ve made it this far is a success in itself.
Rangers are currently at the bottom of the table, having lost all three matches so far. Their last-six run is a mixture of the Scottish Premiership and the Champions League and as such, it also a mix of results completely dependent on the competition. They were thrashed 4-0 by Ajax in Amsterdam and then 0-3 at home by Napoli, before beating Dundee United at home by 2-1 and Hearts away by 0-4. Then came the Anfield clash which they lost 2-0, followed in the end by a 4-0 win over St. Mirren.
Over in the Scottish top flight, Van Bronckhorst’s men are currently in second place, two points behind Celtic, and even though they’ve already been severely beaten by their arch-rivals, they obviously still have plenty to play for on the domestic scene.
The season has turned into a proper disaster for Liverpool, as their Premier League campaign suffers its worst start in a decade and injuries keep plaguing their ranks. Jurgen Klopp has always been able to turn things around whenever his team was in a crisis before, but this time it seems he’s got quite a task on his hands.
Though they have a game in hand on most of the league, Liverpool are currently in 10th place and game after game, they seem unable to shake off the stupor they’ve fallen into. Following their defeat to Arsenal on Sunday, Klopp openly admitted that they are not in the title race anymore – a rare sign of conceding defeat from the German tactician, known for his ability to motivate players.
Liverpool’s last six matches in both competitions they’ve been involved so far include a goalless draw away to city rivals Everton, a 4-1 thrashing at the hands of Napoli in Italy, a 2-1 win over Ajax at home, a 3-3 draw against Brighton and Hove Albion at home, the 2-0 win over Rangers at home, and the 3-2 defeat away to Arsenal.
For a bit of perspective though, it should, perhaps, be said that the Gunners are on great form and currently lead the way in the Premier League, as well as that their victory over the Merseysiders appears to have been greatly helped by serious mistakes in officiating, but another three points lost is still a sore blow for Klopp and his men nonetheless.
Things are obviously better in the Champions League at the moment, and as has been said, a win in Glasgow would get them within reach of the knockout stages.