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Champions League recap: Liverpool shrug off injuries to top group

Liverpool went through as group winners but their UEFA Champions League campaign has not been plain sailing.

Watch all Liverpool's group stage goals
Watch all Liverpool's group stage goals

Liverpool have endured a testing campaign in many ways but emerged as Group C winners and have a home record so formidable they are sure to be tough opponents in the knockouts.

UEFA.tv: group stage review

Campaign so far

Watch Jota's hat-trick
Watch Jota's hat-trick

Group D winners: W4 D1 L1 F10 A3
Top scorer: Diogo Jota (4)

21/10: Ajax 0-1 Liverpool (Tagliafico 35og)
27/10: Liverpool 2-0 Midtjylland (Jota 55, Salah 90+3pen)
03/11: Atalanta 0-5 Liverpool (Jota 16 33 54, Salah 47, Mané 49)
25/11: Liverpool 0-2 Atalanta (Iličić 60, Gosens 64)
01/12: Liverpool 1-0 Ajax (Jones 58)
09/12: Midtjylland 1-1 Liverpool (Scholz 62pen; Salah 1)

Their campaign in ten words: Not without its difficulties, but Jota has fitted in perfectly.

UEFA.com reporter’s view

Despite some high-profile injuries, Liverpool managed to reach the last 16 with relative ease. The Reds defended well in the absence of Virgil van Dijk, while Jota slotted seamlessly into their attack. Jürgen Klopp's team are well equipped to make inroads into the tournament's latter stages once again.
Matthew Howarth, Liverpool reporter

What we’ve learned

Fabinho has often covered at centre-back this season
Fabinho has often covered at centre-back this seasonANP Sport via Getty Images

The Merseysiders have had regular injuries this season, not least affecting the heart of their defence. Normally a metronomic midfielder, Fabinho has filled in on numerous occasions and proven himself to be an accomplished centre-back.

Curtis Jones, meanwhile, has been given more minutes in midfield and looks a real talent capable of becoming a weekly starter sooner rather than later. Up front, Jota settled in immediately and should continue to offer genuine competition once back from a knee problem.

Squad changes

In: Ben Davies, Ozan Kabak, Nathaniel Phillips
Out: Harvey Elliott, Joël Matip, Takumi Minamino

Key stats

• Liverpool's 5-0 victory at Atalanta was the biggest ever by an English club away to Italian opposition in European competition.

• On Matchday 4, Liverpool lost at home by more than one goal for the first time in 137 matches at Anfield under Klopp. It was also their heaviest home defeat since August 2015, when they fell 3-0 to West Ham in the Premier League under Brendan Rodgers.

Watch all Salah's Liverpool Champions League goals
Watch all Salah's Liverpool Champions League goals

• Mohamed Salah's goal at Midtjylland in December was his 22nd for Liverpool in the competition (group stage to final), taking him past Steven Gerrard as the club's highest goalscorer in the European Cup/UEFA Champions League.

Who’s in charge?

Klopp led Dortmund to successive Bundesliga titles and a UEFA Champions League final before guiding the Reds to a sixth European Cup in 2019. His Liverpool stock rose higher still after delivering a first top-flight title since 1990.