Liverpool start this evening’s games in the Champions League, travelling to Denmark to take on Group D’s whipping boy, FC Midtjylland.
The Reds have already qualified for the knockout phase by winning the group, and given their injuries will undoubtedly take this opportunity to rest individuals. However, their reserve players have shown their worth during this difficult period, and this may not result in that significant a drop in quality.
Midtjylland also have very little to play for, apart from the idea of taking a significant scalp, as they have no chance of finishing anything other than bottom of the group.
We noted with interest (and annoyance for Fantasy Football reasons!) that Diogo Jota was rested on the weekend during Liverpool’s home win against Wolves. The Portuguese star has been outstanding so far this season, and given we think he is now likely to star we’ll take a punt that he scores the opening goal this evening.
The late games comes from the Etihad, as Manchester City take on Marseille. City are hot favourites to win this game, even though they already top the table and have little to play for.
Manager Pep Guardiola won’t want his team to ease up on the intensity which has seen his side win their last two league games at a canter. They have conceded just once in the Champions League so far, and in all competitions have kept four straight clean sheets. Marseille have failed to score in four of their five group games, and this all points to a home win.
In the reverse fixture, Ferran Torres scored the opening goal in a 3-0 City victory. He was rested on the weekend, and thus is likely to start tonight, maybe up front if Gabriel Jesus is given some time off. We’ll take him to open the scoring again.
Midtjylland/Liverpool: Jota to score first, 1 pt, at 5/1, Paddy Power
Man City/Marseille: Torres to score first, 1 pt, at 7/1, Paddy Power