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Liverpool vs Atlético Champions League preview: where to watch, predicted line-ups, team news

Liverpool welcome Atlético in their UEFA Champions League round of 16 decider – all you need to know.

Mohamed Salah in training on Tuesday
Mohamed Salah in training on Tuesday Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Liverpool welcome Atlético in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 on 11 March at 21:00 CET. This page will update with team news, quotes and expert analysis as kick-off approaches.


Where to watch the game on TV

Fans can find their local UEFA Champions League broadcast partner(s) here.

What happened in the first leg?

Highlights: Atlético 1-0 Liverpool

Liverpool, holders and runaway Premier League leaders, suffered just their third defeat in all competitions this season. Diego Simeone's men put in a display of trademark resilience once Saúl Ñíguez had given them a fourth-minute lead.

Possible line-ups

Liverpool: Adrián; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mané
Out: Alisson Becker (hip), Shaqiri (calf), Clyne (knee)
Misses next game if booked: Gomez, Mané, Robertson

Atlético: Oblak; Trippier, Savić, Felipe, Renan Lodi; Saúl Ñíguez, Partey, Koke, Vitolo; João Félix, Correa
Doubtful: Lemar (thigh), Morata (thigh)
Misses next game if booked: Correa

Latest results

Form: WLLWL (all competitions, most recent first)
Latest: Liverpool 2-1 Bournemouth, 07/03
Where they stand: 1st in Premier League

Jordan Henderson is in line for a timely return to action
Jordan Henderson is in line for a timely return to actionGetty Images

Latest: Atlético 2-2 Sevilla, 07/03
Where they stand: 5th in Liga

Expert predictions

Matthew Howarth, Liverpool reporter: As was the case against Bournemouth in the Premier League on Saturday, Jürgen Klopp's team will need cool heads to overturn their deficit against an uncompromising, streetwise Atleti side. The lack of an away goal makes this a difficult hurdle to surmount, but a raucous Anfield – coupled with the likely return of captain Jordan Henderson from injury – might just tip the balance in the Reds' favour.

Joseph Walker, Atlético reporter: Anfield is perhaps the most formidable away trip in Europe right now, but if you would back any side to stifle and frustrate Liverpool, then it is this Atleti outfit. They will need to be at their gritty, cunning and conniving best if they are to keep Liverpool at bay, but holding the advantage from the first leg, you would not bet against them hitting the Reds on the counter and sealing their place in the last eight.

What the coaches say

Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool manager: "It's half time – that’s the best news. For us, half-time in a normal game we use in a pretty good way. We learn from the first half, we show the boys a few situations, and very often we improve. We have had three weeks. A lot of things are now much clearer than they were before. We have to show that we have learned from the first half, from the first game, and to show that we really want to go through. There are a lot of opportunities for us – but against a quality team, they will be difficult to find."

Atleti coach Diego Simeone is looking forward to his first match at Anfield
Atleti coach Diego Simeone is looking forward to his first match at AnfieldGetty Images

Diego Simeone, Atlético coach: "We'll need to suffer at certain moments, but we'll get our chances too. You've seen over the past eight years what we can do, and we'll need to show what we are capable of. We'll be up against a great side who have demonstrated what they're all about ever since Jürgen Klopp took over. I've never been to Anfield, as a coach or as a player. I’ve never had the chance to play in such a magnificent stadium, home to a side with such history."

Previous meetings

• The first leg was the teams' first fixture since the 2009/10 UEFA Europa League semi-finals, a tie Atlético won on away goals after a 2-2 aggregate draw thanks to a 1-0 first-leg win in Spain. Diego Forlán got the only goal of the first game, Alberto Aquilani levelling the tie a minute before half-time in Liverpool. With no further goals the match went to extra time, Yossi Benayoun putting Liverpool in front on aggregate in the 95th minute only for Forlán to supply the decisive moment seven minutes later.

Atlético edge Liverpool in 2010 Europa League

• Atlético went on to beat another English club, Fulham, in the final in Hamburg, Forlán getting both goals in a 2-1 win.

• The sides met for the first time in the 2008/09 UEFA Champions League group stage with both games ending 1-1, Simão scoring in the 83rd minute at the Vicente Calderón after Robbie Keane had given Liverpool a 14th-minute lead. At Anfield, a Steven Gerrard penalty five minutes into added time earned the home side a point, Maxi Rodríguez having put Atlético in front in the 37th minute.

• Liverpool went on to top Group D with 14 points and Atlético finished as runners-up on 12. Los Rojiblancos were knocked out by Porto on away goals in the last 16, while the Reds lost to Chelsea in the quarter-finals.

Form guide

• Liverpool won Group E with 13 points, one ahead of Napoli who were 2-0 victors against the holders on Matchday 1. The Reds won their next three matches, at home against Salzburg (4-3) and away (4-1) and home (2-1) against Genk, before being held 1-1 by Napoli at Anfield on Matchday 5. A 2-0 success at Salzburg in their final fixture proved enough to secure progress in first place.

• Last season, Jürgen Klopp's team beat Bayern München 3-1 away in the second leg of their round of 16 tie, going through by the same aggregate score, before ousting Porto 6-1 over two legs in the quarter-finals (2-0 h, 4-1 a). The journey looked to be over when the Reds went down 3-0 at Barcelona in the semi-final first leg, but two goals apiece from Georginio Wijnaldum and Divock Origi sealed a rousing second-leg turnaround, before Mohamed Salah and Origi secured the club's sixth European Cup with a 2-0 final defeat of Tottenham at the Estadio Metropolitano in Madrid – Atlético's home ground.

Watch Salah in action for Liverpool

• Those results mean Liverpool have won their last 11 two-legged European ties, qualifying included. Their last defeat was on penalties in the 2014/15 UEFA Europa League round of 32 against Beşiktaş (1-0 home, 0-1 away). They have not lost a knockout phase tie in the UEFA Champions League since Chelsea beat them 7-5 on aggregate in the 2008/09 quarter-finals.

• The remarkable comeback win against Barcelona in 2018/19 made it four wins out of four against Spanish clubs in two-legged European Cup knockout ties for Liverpool, whose overall aggregate record in knockout ties with Liga sides is W9 L2.

• The first-leg defeat at Atlético means Liverpool have won only two of their last 11 fixtures against Spanish clubs (D2 L7) – a sequence that also includes 3-1 losses under Klopp in the 2016 UEFA Europa League final to Sevilla and the 2018 UEFA Champions League final to Real Madrid.

• The Merseysiders have won only six of their 18 games against Spanish visitors at Anfield (D7 L5), although they have been victorious in four of the last six.

• Liverpool have won nine of their last 13 European fixtures (D2 L2).

• Premier League runners-up in 2018/19, this is Liverpool's third successive appearance in the round of 16 and eighth overall; their record is W6 L1. The sole defeat came against Benfica as holders in 2005/06.

• Defeat at Atlético ended the Reds' eight-match unbeaten run in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 (W6 D2); they had kept seven consecutive clean sheets before conceding at Bayern last season. Their previous defeat was a 1-0 loss at home to Barcelona in the 2006/07 second leg; they won that tie on away goals having triumphed 2-1 in Spain.

• Liverpool are unbeaten in 25 European home games (W18 D7), since a 3-0 loss to Real Madrid on 22 October 2014.

• The Reds kept clean sheets in all three home knockout games last season and two of their three in 2017/18.

• Liverpool have already claimed European silverware this term, beating Chelsea 5-4 on penalties after a 2-2 draw in the UEFA Super Cup in Istanbul. They also won the FIFA Club World Cup in December, overcoming Flamengo 1-0 after extra time in the final.

• Liverpool have won 14 of the 28 UEFA competition ties in which they lost the away first leg, including that success against Barcelona last season. They have emerged triumphant from nine of the 12 ties in which they lost the first leg 1-0 away, most recently against Villarreal in the 2015/16 UEFA Europa League semi-finals (3-0 h), although all three aggregate defeats the Reds have suffered when losing 1-0 away in the first game have come in the last six such ties.

• Liverpool's record in five UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W4 L1:
4-2 v Roma, 1983/84 European Champion Clubs' Cup final
3-2 v AC Milan, 2004/05 UEFA Champions League final
4-1 v Chelsea, 2006/07 UEFA Champions League semi-final
4-5 v Beşiktaş, 2014/15 UEFA Europa League round of 32
5-4 v Chelsea, 2019 UEFA Super Cup

• Atlético finished with ten points in this season's group stage, six behind Juventus. Having fought back from two goals down to draw with Juve on Matchday 1, Atlético then won 2-0 at Lokomotiv Moskva and 1-0 at home to Bayer Leverkusen only to lose 2-1 in Germany and 1-0 at Juve; a 2-0 defeat of Lokomotiv in Madrid on Matchday 6 nevertheless earned second place.

Watch Atlético man of the match Renan Lodi's highlights

• Second in Spain in 2018/19, this is Atlético's tenth UEFA Champions League campaign and their eighth appearance in the knockout stages.

• Atleti also finished second in their section in 2018/19 and bowed out in the round of 16 after succumbing to a Juventus fightback (2-0 h, 0-3 a).

• The Spanish side have still won four of their six round of 16 ties, losing only the first – on away goals against Porto in 2008/09 – and the last. Their most recent win was a 4-2 aggregate defeat of Leverkusen in 2016/17 (4-2 a, 0-0 h).

• Last season's 3-0 second-leg loss at Juventus means Atlético have won only one of their last nine away matches in the UEFA Champions League knockout rounds (D2 L6).

• Atlético have lost five of their last 14 European away games, winning four, although four of those defeats have come in their last six matches (W1 D1).

• Despite defeats on Matchdays 4 and 5 this season, Atlético have lost only five of their last 29 matches in continental competition (W18 D6).

• Atlético's last meetings with an English club came in the 2017/18 UEFA Europa League semi-final, when they beat Arsenal 2-1 on aggregate (1-1 a, 1-0 h). They have been victorious in eight of their ten two-legged knockout contests against English teams, including the last four; only Derby County (1974/75 UEFA Cup) and Bolton Wanderers (2007/08 UEFA Cup) have eliminated them. Atlético have won all six previous ties in which they hosted English opposition in the first leg.

• Atlético have won just twice in 13 away games against English clubs, losing four times. The Madrid side have drawn 1-1 on each of their last three visits to England and are unbeaten in the last four.

• The Rojiblancos have reached two UEFA Champions League and three UEFA Europa League finals in the last ten seasons.

• Atlético have won 30 of the 38 UEFA competition ties in which they have prevailed in the home first leg – last season's defeat by Juventus ended a run of 19 successive aggregate victories after a home win in the first game. When the home first leg has finished 1-0, Atlético's aggregate record is W8 L3, with victories in the last five such ties, most recently against Leicester in the 2016/17 quarter-finals (1-1 a) and in all three against English opposition.

• Atlético's record in six UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W2 L4:
6-7 v Derby, 1974/75 UEFA Cup second round
1-3 v Fiorentina, 1989/90 UEFA Cup first round
1-3 v Villarreal, 2004 UEFA Intertoto Cup final
3-2 v Bayer Leverkusen, 2014/15 UEFA Champions League round of 16
8-7 v PSV Eindhoven, 2015/16 UEFA Champions League round of 16
3-5 v Real Madrid, 2015/16 UEFA Champions League final

Links and trivia

• Have played in England:
Kieran Trippier (Manchester City 1999–2011, Barnsley 2010–11 (loan), Burnley 2011–15, Tottenham 2015–19)
Stefan Savić (Manchester City 2011–12)
Álvaro Morata (Chelsea 2017–18)
Diego Costa (Chelsea 2014–17)

Diego Costa played in England with Chelsea
Diego Costa played in England with ChelseaIcon Sport via Getty Images

• Trippier played 90 minutes as Spurs lost 2-0 to Liverpool in last season's UEFA Champions League final at Atlético's Estadio Metropolitano.

• Have played in Spain:
Fabinho (Real Madrid 2012/13)
Adrián (Real Betis 1998–2013, Alcalá 2008 (loan), Utrera 2009 (loan))

• Have played together:
James Milner & Stefan Savić (Manchester City 2011–12)
Fabinho & Thomas Lemar (Monaco 2015–18)

• International team-mates:
Jordan Henderson, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Adam Lallana & Kieran Trippier (England)
Alisson Becker, Roberto Firmino, Fabinho & Renan Lodi (Brazil)
Dejan Lovren & Šime Vrsaljko (Croatia)
Divock Origi & Yannick Carrasco (Belgium)