Liverpool vs Spartak Moscow preview, betting tips and prediction: Reds to ease through as group winnersPublished December 03, 2017
Liverpool to win 3-0 @ 15/2 with Betfair
Roberto Firmino FGS and Liverpool to win @ 7/2 with Betfair
Liverpool to win with a -2 handicap @ 15/8 with Betfair
Liverpool have shown the best and worst of themselves in this Champions League group, in fact they showed that in their last game. At half time of their matchday five encounter in Sevilla, the Reds were 3-0 up, but a second half fight back from the Spaniards shocked Jurgen Klopp’s men. Having scored 19 goals in six games, including five in Saturday’s demolition of Brighton in the Premier League, Liverpool have shown they have so much attacking quality at their disposal, making them a threat to anyone on their day.
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Sadio Mane was an unused substitute at the Amex Stadium, leaving Philippe Coutinho, Mohamed Salah, top scorer with 16 goals this term, and our FGS tip Roberto Firmino to run riot. They need to win against a Spartak side used to draws, but that attacking quality should take them through as group winners with minimal fuss. Defensively, they may be vulnerable, but there are questions over how ambitious Spartak will be.
Liverpool are red hot right now, going forward at least, but perhaps Spartak should throw caution to the wind a little. They cannot win the group, but their qualification dream is not yet over, with just two points separating them and Sevilla. The Europa League spot is already secured, with a four-point buffer between themselves and Maribor. Quincy Promes has been a threat throughout the group stages, netting three goals, and if the Russians can find the form that saw them hammer Sevilla 5-1 at home earlier in the campaign, but three draws suggests an inconsistent approach to attacking.
The 3-3 draw in Seville says a lot not only about Liverpool’s defence, but also their attitude. They struggled to stay composed and didn’t have the leaders to rally round and get the job done. Liverpool do have an impressive home record overall, though, so they should be more relaxed early on. Spartak will be a rigid outfit to face, but as they showed on Saturday, Liverpool can cut through teams in a matter of seconds. There are a lot of good value bets for those who want to back the home side to continue their fantastic goalscoring form.
Liverpool opted to play Gini Wijnaldum at centre back at Brighton alongside Emre Can and Dejan Lovren, but Ragnar Klaven should return after sitting on the bench. Joel Matip missed out completely and is therefore a doubt, with Adam Lallana also not quite fit to return from a long-term injury issue. Sadio Mane could return to the starting XI, with Klopp exercising a rotation policy such is the depth of his attacking talent.
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Spartak have no fresh injury concerns and should be at full strength for one of the biggest games in their recent history.