As regards the 2022-2023 UEFA Champions League round of 16 fixtures. Real Madrid vs Liverpool will take place on Wednesday at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
The first-leg ended in a 5-2 loss for the Premier League side at Anfield. Therefore, the Reds are expected to fight back in Spain.
Because of the away goal rules in the UEFA Champions League. Jurgen Klopp’s men would need to score more 4 goals to qualify for the next phase.
Regardless of their poor runs in all competitions. Liverpool always dishes out impressive performances in European competitions.
As a result, it would be too early to rule out the Reds ahead of the UCL second-leg on Wednesday at Santiago Bernabéu.
Real Madrid looks balanced and composed at the moment, following their 3-1 victory over Espanyol in La Liga.
Liverpool lost 1-0 in their previous fixture in the Premier League. Of course, they wouldn’t want to lose back-to-back in all competitions.
Initially, Jurgen Klopp’s men don’t accept defeats easily at Anfield. However, they foolishly conceded 5 goals in the first-leg against Los Blancos.
Liverpool are winless in their previous 3 trips to Santiago Bernabéu. Their last win in Spain was in 2009, meaning they need more than luck on Wednesday.
Jurgen Klopp always struggles against Carlo Ancelotti. He remains winless when facing the former Chelsea gaffer in all competitions.
Nevertheless, the German manager is expected to change his formation, so as to be able to claim 3 points in Spain.
Even though they may not be able to score more than four goals, failing to qualify for the quarter-finals in the UEFA Champions League.
Of course, Chelsea frustrated Real Madrid in the UCL at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium last campaign.
Therefore, Liverpool have enough reinforcements to replicate the same drama against Carlo Ancellotti’s side on Wednesday.
Real Madrid vs Liverpool Team News
Karim Benzema is most likely to be unavailable to face the Premier League side in the UEFA Champions League.
Carlo Ancelotti would have to choose between playing him on Wednesday or resting him ahead of their El-Clasico against Barcelona.
Regardless, the Frenchman’s availability for the game remains uncertain, as he was out against Espanyol due to an ankle injury. So, Rodrygo may start against the Reds.
Also, David Alaba will miss the UCL match on Wednesday, meaning Antonio Rüdiger will partner with Eder Militao to balance the defense.
Another big player unavailable is Ferland Mendy. Apparently, the Los Blancos defense line is most likely to leak against Liverpool.
However, Carlo Ancelotti may use Nacho Fernandez as the starting left-back or play Eduardo Camavinga in that position.
In the absence of Karim Benzema, Rodrygo, Vinícius and Valverde will be the starting frontline, enough to destroy the Reds at the back.
Speaking of Liverpool, the likes of Thiago Alcantara, Luis Díaz, and Joe Gomez are all unavailable. They have yet to return to training.
Also, Naby Keïta, Calvin Ramsay will miss the team’s trip to Santiago Bernabéu ahead of Wednesday.
Nevertheless, Jurgen Klopp is expected to change many things in the starting XI, deploying Roberto Firmino, Diogo Jota, and Jordan Henderson.
Real Madrid vs Liverpool: 3 tactical setups Klopp may use to claim victory at Bernabéu
Even though scoring 4 goals in Spain on Wednesday may not be possible for the Reds, they can still avoid a back-to-back defeat.
A high level of miracle would be needed for Liverpool to make it to the next phase in the UEFA Champions League, after their 5-2 loss in the first-leg.
Regardless, they are most likely to win at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, allowing them to avoid consecutive defeats before their next league clash.
Jurgen Klopp may imbibe the 4-2-3-1 against Real Madrid on Wednesday. In the absence of Thiago Alcantara, playing with two defensive midfielders will help the team’s performance.
Obviously, the Los Blancos are well equipped in the midfield, with the likes of Tino Kroos, Aurélien Tchouaméni, Luka Modric, and others.
Therefore, the Reds are expected to stay strong in the midfield. The combination between Fabinho and Henderson is enough to defeat the La Liga side.
Jordan Henderson pulled off a masterclass performance against Manchester United in the Premier League, helping the team’s overall display.
As a result, he has the ability to dictate the team’s tempo from the midfield. Outplaying Madrid’s midfielders won’t be easy to achieve on Wednesday.
However, the 4-2-3-1 formation looks like the best option for Jurgen Klopp. He won’t be able to command the midfield without Thiago Alcantara in a 4-3-3.
Cody Gakpo behind the striker
Liverpool’s attackers are available for the UEFA Champions League. So, it’s going to be a tough decision for the German manager.
Regardless, Klopp is expected to play Cody Gakpo behind the striker. Because of his athleticism and bravery, since he can comfortably make use of both feet.
With the Dutch youngster as the No.10, the Reds may play double central forwards, making Mohamed Salah and Diogo Jota suitable options.
Gakpo is very pacey, and his acceleration always helps him whenever he attacks from the midfield. He may be the dangerous weapon for Liverpool on Wednesday.
Without David Alaba, Real Madrid looks fragile defensively, even though Antonio Rüdiger is a warrior.
Cody Gakpo alone is capable of destroying the Los Blancos defense line, because he’s dangerous with pace, putting his dribbling prowess into action.
Ibrahima Konaté as a right-back
Trent Alexander-Arnold has shown enough reasons why he cannot defend against Vinícius. He has failed to silence the Brazilian in their last two clashes.
As a result, Jurgen Klopp may start Ibrahima Konaté as a right-back at Santiago Bernabéu. The Frenchman is wise defensively.
Whenever Barcelona plays against Real Madrid, Xavi Hernández is wise enough to use Ronald Araujo against Vinícius.
The Spanish gaffer knows that once the team is capable of silencing the Brazilian, Ancellotti’s men won’t have enough ground to operate.
Therefore, Jurgen Klopp is expected to try the same strategy on Wednesday. Not playing Trent Alexander-Arnold may weaken the attack.
However, playing Ibrahima Konaté as a RB will help the team’s defensive performance, making it possible to avoid Vinícius-Rodrygo combination.