Liverpool v Napoli facts

Liverpool and Napoli face a matchday six showdown, the Italian side travelling to Anfield with the upper hand in Group C.

Lorenzo Insigne scores Napoli's winner against Liverpool on matchday two
Lorenzo Insigne scores Napoli's winner against Liverpool on matchday two ©AFP/Getty Images

There is sure to be a dramatic denouement in Group C as Liverpool and Napoli meet at Anfield with a place in the UEFA Champions League knockout stages on the line.

• The Italian side – who beat Liverpool 1-0 on matchday two thanks to Lorenzo Insigne's 90th-minute winner – have nine points, one ahead of second-placed Paris Saint-Germain and three above Liverpool with Crvena zvezda out of contention on four points.

• Napoli, who have never won in England in six previous visits, will therefore be through if they avoid defeat, or if they lose and Paris are also beaten.

• Liverpool must win to have any chance of progress. If Paris win at Crvena zvezda, Liverpool must win 1-0 or by two goals or more. If Liverpool, Paris and Napoli all finish on nine points, the English club would finish first on the three-way head-to-head, with second place depending on the scoreline at Anfield.

• The Reds will finish fourth, and be out of Europe, if they lose and Crvena zvezda win.

Highlights: Napoli 1-0 Liverpool
Highlights: Napoli 1-0 Liverpool

Previous meetings
• The clubs had met only twice before this season, in the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League group stage. The game in Naples ended scoreless; Ezequiel Lavezzi gave Napoli a first-half lead at Anfield before Steven Gerrard's hat-trick in the final 15 minutes, including goals in the 88th and 89th minutes, secured a dramatic late win for Liverpool.

• The Reds went on to finish top of their section, with Napoli in second place; the Italian club were eliminated in the round of 32, Liverpool losing in the last 16.

Form guide
Liverpool
• Having scored a last-gasp winner to defeat Paris 3-2 on matchday one, the tables were turned on Liverpool with that late loss at Napoli. Crvena zvezda were then beaten 4-0 at Anfield before away losses in Belgrade (0-2) and, in their most recent fixture, Paris (1-2).

• The Reds have lost five of their last seven European matches, all of those defeats coming outside England.

• Fourth in the Premier League in 2017/18, Liverpool are in the group stage for the second season running, having featured once in the previous seven.

• Liverpool scored an average of 3.15 goals per game in the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League.

See Liverpool lose on matchday five
See Liverpool lose on matchday five

• The five-time winners reached their eighth European Cup final in 2017/18, when they won five of their seven UEFA Champions League home matches (qualifying included), drawing the others.

• Before being held 2-2 by Sevilla on matchday one last season, Liverpool's previous six European games at Anfield had all produced a home win. They are unbeaten in their last 18 European home matches (W13 D5), since a 3-0 loss to Real Madrid on 22 October 2014.

• The Reds' record in 28 European games against Italian teams is W10 D5 L13. At home it is W7 D0 L4; they have lost two of the last four, although they beat Roma 5-2 in last season's semi-final first leg.

Napoli
• Napoli are unbeaten in this season's competition, picking up two wins and three draws. They opened their campaign by drawing 0-0 at Crvena zvezda – who they beat 3-1 in Italy in their last game. The other win was at home to Liverpool on matchday two, the Italian side drawing 2-2 at Paris and 1-1 at home to the French club.

• Napoli had lost their last four away matches in the UEFA Champions League proper before drawing on matchday one; they had won two of their previous three before the current run of six matches without a victory.

• Serie A runners-up in 2017/18, Napoli are in the group stage for the fifth time – all in the last eight seasons. They reached the round of 16 in 2011/12 and 2016/17.

Watch Napoli claim crucial win last time out
Watch Napoli claim crucial win last time out

• The Italian club finished third in their section last season – winning two of their three home matches and losing the other – and went on to the UEFA Europa League round of 32, where they lost to RB Leipzig.

• Napoli lost 2-1 at Manchester City in last season's group stage, their fourth defeat in six away games against Premier League clubs (D2). They have lost on their last three visits to England in the UEFA Champions League.

Links and trivia
• Napoli are the eighth club Carlo Ancelotti has coached in the UEFA Champions League, after Parma, Juventus, Milan, Chelsea, Paris, Real Madrid and Bayern, extending his own competition record.

• Mohamed Salah played in Serie A for Fiorentina (2015) and Roma (2015–17), scoring for the latter in a 3-1 win at the Stadio San Paolo in October 2016.

• Have also played in Italy:
Alisson Becker (Roma 2016–18)
Xherdan Shaqiri (Inter 2015)

• Have played in England:
Vlad Chiricheș (Tottenham 2013–15)
David Ospina (Arsenal 2014–18)

• Have played together:
Sadio Mané & Kalidou Koulibaly (Metz 2011/12)
Georginio Wijnaldum & Dries Mertens (PSV Eindhoven 2011–13)
Fabinho & José Callejón, Raúl Albiol (Real Madrid 2012/13)

• International team-mates:
Divock Origi, Simon Mignolet & Dries Mertens (Belgium)
Sadio Mané & Kalidou Koulibaly (Senegal)
Alberto Moreno & José Callejón, Raúl Albiol (Spain)
Dejan Lovren & Marko Rog (Croatia)

#UCL matchday five skillszone
#UCL matchday five skillszone

Latest news

Liverpool
• Liverpool have won their last five Premier League matches, and are unbeaten in their 16 league games this season (W13 D3). They were 4-0 winners at Bournemouth on Saturday, equalling their biggest victory of the season, to go top of the table and are the last team unbeaten in the 2018/19 English top flight.

• Mohamed Salah scored a hat-trick at Bournemouth, making it ten goals in 16 Premier League appearances this season. It was the first time the Egyptian had found the net more than once in a league game since hitting four goals against Watford on 17 March.

• On 5 December, James Milner scored Liverpool's equaliser at Burnley, a match the visitors went on to win 3-1. Milner has never lost any of the 50 Premier League matches in which he has scored (W39 D11); he made his 500th appearance in the competition at Bournemouth.

• The Reds have won their last four matches at Anfield in all competitions.

• Liverpool paid a world-record fee for a goalkeeper this summer to bring in Alisson from Roma – this was quickly eclipsed by Chelsea's signing of Kepa Arrizabalaga.

• Milner's nine assists in the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League set a new competition record.

• Joe Gomez was taken off midway through the first half at Burnley having fractured his left leg, an injury that is expected to keep him out for six weeks.

• Andrew Robertson (dead leg) and Sadio Mané (cut foot) missed the trip to Turf Moor. Robertson played 90 minutes at Bournemouth, Mané coming on as a second-half substitute.

• Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is unlikely to play this season after suffering a serious knee injury in last season's UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg against Roma on 24 April.

• Salah and Mané have been named on the five-man shortlist for the 2018 BBC African Footballer of the Year award.

Napoli
• Lorenzo Insigne's next appearance in UEFA club competition will be his 50th.

• Dries Mertens' second goal against Crvena zvezda was his 100th for Napoli.

• Napoli are unbeaten in their last 12 matches in all competitions (W8 D4), since a 3-1 Serie A loss at Juventus on 29 September. They beat Frosinone 4-0 in Naples on Saturday.

• Arkadiusz Milik scored twice at the weekend and has four goals in his last five Napoli appearances. The Pole has scored seven Serie A goals this season, already his best return. 

• Fabián Ruiz scored Napoli's opener in a 2-1 win at Atalanta on 3 December, his third goal in his last five Serie A games. The Spanish midfielder has already matched his most productive season in front of goal, equalling his total of three set with Real Betis in 2017/18.

• Marek Hamšík made his 512th Napoli appearance against Paris on matchday four, overtaking the all-time club record set by former defender Giuseppe Bruscolotti.

• Simone Verdi has not played since suffering a thigh injury against Udinese on 20 October. When he resumed training with the team, he twisted his left ankle.

• Amin Younes made his Napoli debut as a 73rd-minute substitute against Frosinone having not played since undergoing an operation on a ruptured Achilles tendon shortly after joining in the summer.

• Goalkeeper Alex Meret was another to make his Napoli debut at the weekend having been out since breaking his arm soon after joining this summer. Faouzi Ghoulam also made his long-awaited return, playing 90 minutes, having been out since 1 November 2017; he underwent knee surgery in July.

• Vlad Chiricheş ruptured the cruciate ligament in his left knee in Romania's game against Montenegro on 7 September.

• Kalidou Koulibaly has been included on a five-man shortlist for the BBC African Footballer of the Year award.

• Koulibaly was also named in the Serie A team of the 2017/18 season at the Gran Galà del Calcio, organised by the Association of Italian Footballers, on 3 December.

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