Liverpool takes on free-scoring Italian side Atalanta on matchday three of the UEFA Champions League.
It’s been a successful start to the competition for Liverpool who’ve won their first two games without conceding a goal.
Their defensive prowess, especially without Virgil Van Dijk will be tested to the fullest against one of the best-attacking sides in Europe.
Atalanta scored 98 goals last season, 22 more than champions Juventus and the most out of any side in the top five European leagues. They had both the biggest home win (7-1 v Udinese) and biggest away win (7-0 v Torino) last season in which they finished third for the second consecutive season.
They sit fourth in the league this season after four wins and two losses in their first six games and Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp paid praise to Atalanta’s rise over the last few years as he prepares to take them on for the first time as Liverpool manager.
What Does Klopp Think About a High Scoring Atalanta Side
“Very good. Very good; top, top players; top recruitment; very, very well organized; play their system with 100 percent conviction, they know exactly what everybody has to do. They use the skills of the individuals in an incredibly smart way, so you can exactly see how they use the strikers, how they use the strikers in different ways.
They have all our respect. I know how good they are. I actually enjoyed the analysis, I enjoyed watching them because it’s really interesting. How always in life, if you see something interesting you should try to learn a little bit of it. That’s what we always try but, in this case, for sure it’s possible for us.”
Despite injury issues curtailing the first few weeks of their 2020/21 Premier League season, Liverpool has demonstrated the determination and warrior spirit that led them to their first Premier League title last season as they sit atop of the Premier League today.
Their latest win at home to West Ham United 2-1 equaled a 40-year record of 63 home games unbeaten in the league in what is one of many records Jurgen Klopp has matched/beaten during his tenure as Liverpool manager.
Liverpool Odds to Clip Atalanta
When asked about the threat of Atalanta going forward and whether this will make Liverpool change their game plan, Klopp said he respects Atalanta and it will be down to all 11 players to deny the Atalanta players the goal-scoring opportunities they usually create in abundance.
“You have to make sure the players who are usually finishing off the situations don’t get the ball that often because that’s something you can do together. The block is one player, the save is one player, all the rest is for 11 players. That’s why we work on that pretty often, to be honest. That’s the match plan. It would not be different in any situation. We respect that. They are a threat.”
This game will indeed have plenty of goals and I have Liverpool winning 4-2 in a thrilling match-up.
Sportsbooks odds on a Liverpool win open at +105. Odds on an Atalanta win open at +210. Odds on a draw between the two sides open at +310.