Ludogrets vs Liverpool: Champions League match preview

A look ahead to this week’s game in Razgrad

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The Independent Online

Liverpool will be looking for a win over Ludogrets tonight in their Champions league clash. The return of The Reds to Champions League football after five years started off with a win but has only gone downhill since. The confidence that Brendan Rodgers's side had built at the end of last year has completely vanished after losing four out of their five last games.

The departure of striker Luis Suarez to Barcelona has had a huge impact on a squad that looked more disillusioned than ever after losing 3-1 against Crystal Palace last Sunday.

Liverpool had to deal with another setback earlier this week after it was announced striker Daniel Sturridge, who had only just returned from a calf injury, had picked up a thigh injury. Sturridge scored 25 goals last season but has played just three times this campaign, and is not expected to return before the new year.

Liverpool beat tonight's opponents 2-1 in September thanks to a late goal from Mario Balotelli. However, the Italian striker has failed to add to that solitary strike.

Ludogrets, who are Champions League debutants, are still in the hunt for a place in the knock out stages, although like Liverpool they have only won once. A loss for FC Basel tonight and a win for Ludogrets would leave them second in the table.

Liverpool are currently failing to live up to the expectations they set for themselves last year by finishing second in the Premier League. Pressure is growing on Brendan Rodgers and his squad could use a boost to their confidence tonight.

Kick-off: 19:45

PAST MEETINGS...

Liverpool 2 (Balotelli, Gerrard) – 1 (Abalo) Ludogrets 16 September 2014

STATS...

Liverpool have won the Champions League five times.

Liverpool have won one of their last seven matches.

Ludogrets are the first Bulgarian side to ever secure points in the Champions League.

Liverpool have not scored in the Champions League since their victory over Ludogrets.

ODDS...

Ludogrets to win: 4.2

Draw: 3.6

Liverpool to win: 1.95

TV: Sky Sports 5, 7.45pm

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