Liverpool vs Real Madrid. Prediction and Preview. Probable Lineups, Team News, Stats and more

Will Real Madrid be able to handle Liverpool in the first leg of the UCL Round of 16?

Liverpool FC will host Real Madrid CF in the UEFA Champions League 1/8 match at Anfield Stadium. The fixture will take place on Wednesday, February 22, beginning at 01:30 IST.

In what promises to be a mind-boggling fight Liverpool will face off against Real Madrid in the highly-anticipated UCL game. Both teams have a rich history in this competition, having won it a combined total of 20 times, and this matchup is sure to live up to the hype. 

Both Liverpool and Real are revitalized after a lackluster start to the year. After losing to Mallorca, the Los Blancos won four games in a row by a combined score of 15-4. The Reds have won two games in a row for the first time in 2023 (against Everton and Newcastle) and are now six points away from the UСL zone with one game to spare. 

Let’s not forget the personal grudges, exactly the same rivals played in the final of the 21/22 UCL campaign, where the Spaniards minimally overcame the English to bring another highly prestigious trophy to Madrid. Jurgen Klopp is no doubt got it in for Carlo Ancelotti as he strives to avenge the frustrating defeat. That makes this midnight encounter all the more exciting. 

What can we expect this Wednesday night? Parimatch News will tell you everything you need to know ahead of the upcoming match.

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Liverpool News & Current Form:

The team is having perhaps its worst year under Jurgen Klopp. There is still a long way to go, and in the English Premier League right now there is no clear favorite for 4th place. It is quite possible that the German manager and his charges will now focus on the Champions League. The Reds are out of the both Emirates FA Cup and English Football League Cup, only a miracle will help in the EPL. 

Liverpool just had one of their best victories this season. The match won in the sixth round of the Champions League group stage against SSC Napoli (2-0) was no longer decisive from a tournament point of view, and for both teams. The first-round game with Newcastle United FC (0-2) was won rather by miracle, so the only comparison with the victory over the Magpies was the home win over Manchester City FC (1-0). Moreover, it was not just a result against a serious opponent, but it was done with good play.

We should also note the authors of the goals in the last two games of the Merseyside side. In the derby with Everton FC (2-0) Mohamed Salah scored his first EPL game since December 26, while Gakpo, who transferred in winter, scored his first goal for the club. With Newcastle, Darvin Nunez, who missed chances, scored his first EPL goal since November. It should be noted, however, that Salah and Nunez also scored once each on January 8, but it was a Emirates FA Cup game with Wolverhampton Wanderers FC.

Also for Liverpool fans there are two more good news: the club’s newcomer Cody Gakpo is gradually getting used to Anfield – the Dutchman scored a goal in both derby against Everton and in the game against Newcastle United; Virgil van Dijk, the Reds’ leader in defense returned to the team, the star defender recovered from his injury and played in the Liverpool’s lineup for the first time since January 2.

In doubt is the participation of striker Darwin Nunez, who was injured the day before. Brazilian midfielder Arthur Melo and Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara definitely will not play in this match.

Real Madrid News & Current Form: 

Real Madrid, meanwhile, have suffered only one defeat in ten games since losing the Supercopa de Espana to FC Barcelona, failing to penetrate the defense of RCD Mallorca (0-1) before leaving for Morocco for the FIFA Club World Cup. That tournament was expected to be won by the Whites. And that actually happened. Real won by beating Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal FC in the final by a hilarious 5-3 scoreline. After that it was another 4-0 with Elche CF, and just yesterday, Real beat CA Osasuna on the road, scoring goals in the 78th and 92nd minutes. 

Madrid approach the 1/8 finals of the Champions League in great shape. Except for the health problems of three key players: the participation of Karim Benzema, Toni Kroos and Aurélien Tchouameni in the match is questionable.  The Whites coaching staff give no guarantees that French forward Benzema will be able to play at Anfield. The meeting with Osasuna the player missed due to a muscle injury. But even without their leaders Real remains a superclub. Especially since Marco Asensio and Federico Valverde have played well in recent matches. Carlo Ancelotti has someone to replace them.

The good news is the return of star goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. The Belgian left the infirmary and returned to the lineup of Real, having made the wedge-sheet in the aforementioned match against Osasuna.

The reigning Champions League winner finished first in a quartet with RB Leipzig, Shakhtar Donetsk FC and Celtic FC. The Spanish team won the first three matches in the group, after which they allowed themselves to relax.

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Liverpool form guide: W-D-L-L-W-W

Real Madrid form guide: W-L-W-W-W-W

Liverpool vs Real Madrid Head-To-Head Record: 

LiverpoolDrawReal Madrid

In total, the Blancos were stronger than the Merseysiders on five occasions in the past six meetings between these teams.

  • October 22, 2014: Liverpool 0 – 3 Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League);
  • November 4, 2014: Real Madrid 1 – 0 Liverpool (UEFA Champions League);
  • May 26, 2018: Liverpool 1 – 3 Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League);
  • April 6, 2021: Real Madrid 3 – 1 Liverpool (UEFA Champions League);
  • April 14, 2021: Liverpool 0 – 0 Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League);
  • May 28, 2022: Liverpool 0 – 1 Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League).

Liverpool vs Real Madrid Predicted XI:

Liverpool’s possible starting lineup (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Bajcetic, Fabinho, Henderson; Salah, Gakpo, Jota.

Real Madrid’s possible starting lineup (4-3-3): Courtois; Carvajal, Militao, Rudiger, Alaba; Kroos, Camavinga, Modric; Valverde, Benzema, Vinicius Jr.

Statistical preview of the match Liverpool vs Real Madrid:

  • The last time Real beat Liverpool at Anfield was in November 2014. Back then, the Royals defeated them 3-0.
  • Liverpool’s First XI average age is 27.8 yrs.
  • Real Madrid’s First XI average age is 28.6 yrs.
  • Real Madrid are unbeaten in their last 6 games against this opponent.
  • Real Madrid have registered a clean sheet in four of their last five meetings.
  • Liverpool are unbeaten in their last 5 games at home.
  • Real Madrid are unbeaten in 7 of their last 9 games.
  • Real Madrid conceded an average of 1.00 goals per game in the last 5 games.
  • Real Madrid scored in 5 of the last 7 games against this opponent.
  • Real Madrid are scoring an average of 3.00 goals per game in their last 5 games.
  • Liverpool conceded an average of 1.00 goals and scored the same amount per game in their last 5 games.
  • Speaking of corners: Liverpool have won 16 of the last 18 home Champions League games (that’s four seasons) by corners. The average is 7.72 to 2.11.
  • Liverpool have scored at least twice in eight of their last nine UCL home games.

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What has been said before the match:

The Reds coach Jurgen Klopp spoke about the game with Real Madrid:

“With recent history and both clubs quite successful in the competition, difficult to play against, grinding results out, it will be a top football game. I’m really happy we can play now, four weeks ago it would have been different, but life is all about timing. Maybe we’ve found our feet right in time for this game even though I would have expected us to be ourselves if we hadn’t won the last two games because it’s a different competition and you have to use this opportunity.”

“We have these two results and hopefully we can build on that but we need to play a super game, we need to play two super games, to be honest, to get through. I have no problem with that because if you don’t play your best you don’t have a chance – Real Madrid don’t have to play their best and still have a chance! That’s the difference. That’s pretty special. I can’t wait.”

“We played a good game [about last year’s final] and could have won the game. They scored a decisive goal and we didn’t, and that was the reason.”

“But this is now, same clubs, different teams, different times. There’s a history in the last few years. One of us was always in the final, that’s how it feels at least, and usually if you go to the final you have to kick us out or them, this time we play each other, let’s see who goes through.”

Coach Carlo Ancelotti ahead of the fixture:

“I have good memories of the final last year. It was an even game. I share the opinion of Klopp, they maybe had more possession and we were solid at the back. If you’re solid at the back against Liverpool you can achieve something good.”

“We are back here and feel good and full of hope. We are up for it. We are really keen, like we did last year. We know it’s a really tough tie. Not just this game, we have to perform well here and the return leg also.”

“Liverpool have never changed their quality. We expect an intense game, we will be under a lot of pressure, a game where we haven’t got time to breathe. We know very well what to expect and we are prepared for that.”

“We keep going with the transition of young players coming through and it has been forced on us a bit because of injuries. I’m not worried about it as we have some good players who have come in. The players who have come in for Tchouameni and Kroos have done really well. Whoever comes in for them tomorrow I’m confident they will do well.”

Liverpool vs Real Madrid Prediction:

Both Real Madrid and Liverpool approach this match in good form having rebounded smoothly from a lackluster start to the year. The coaches have been able to bring the teams to the start of the Champions League play-offs in a positive mood. 

However, the English club cannot boast any outstanding achievements in this campaign. Liverpool have dropped out of both English Cups and are in the middle of the EPL standings, with the team having already conceded as many goals in 20 league rounds as they did in the whole of the last Premier League. And if we talk about goalscoring productivity, they are now producing at the level of Brentford. The Madrid side are more stable, as they continue to chase Barcelona in La Liga, are competing for the Spanish Cup and, just moments ago, won the Club World Cup.

Hence the question of motivation – for Liverpool this tournament is definitely a priority this season, they will be giving it their all on the pitch. Although Anfield is not as much of a fortress for the Reds as usual, even a team like Real will find it very difficult here. 

In this match, it will be very important for Liverpool to get the best possible advantage at their stadium. With the Reds having found their stride recently with two straight wins by a combined score of 4-0, the Merseysideiders can give Los Blancos a lot of trouble and at the very least they can avoid losing. Such an option seems realistic, given the history of personal confrontations. Carlo Ancelotti’s style and pragmatism are no secret to Jurgen Klopp, with the German looking to find a key to overpower his vis-a-vis before the return leg in Madrid. 

On the other hand, the Spaniards need only one good attack to decide the outcome in their favor, so the home side will not expose their backs, having learnt from the bitter experience of previous matches. We should not expect a lot of open play and goals.

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Parimatch News staff prediction:

We say: Liverpool will not lose – Yes.