Liverpool visits Base in European Champions League action Oct. 1
By Ian Palmer
English Premier League club Liverpool will visit Switzerland this Wednesday, October 1 to take on Basel in a Group B European Champions League showdown at St Jakob Park. Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers is keeping his fingers crosses that English international striker Daniel Sturridge will be ready to play after sitting out the past few weeks with a thigh injury. Sturridge has missed the Reds last five games and they’ve struggled without him by winning twice, losing twice and drawing once.
Here’s the latest betting line on this Champions League match up from bet365:
- Liverpool to win 21/20
- Basel to win 14/4
- Draw 13/5
- Goals Over/Under is 2.5 – Over 7/10 Under 11/10
The 25-year-old Sturridge has 36 goals in 52 games with Liverpool since joining the side from fellow Premier League club Chelsea in January of 2013. He scored 21 league goals last year and was second on the squad next to Luis Suarez’s league-leading 31. Suarez is gone now as the Uruguayan international striker was sold to Spanish La Liga giants Barcelona during the summer transfer window. Liverpool used some of the money they raked in from the Suarez sale to buy Italian international forward Mario Balotelli from Milan. Balotelli was bought for 16 million pounds, but has yet to impress with his new club even though he did score in Liverpool’s first Champions League outing.
Liverpool has just seven points in their opening six league games, meaning they’ve already dropped 11 points out of a possible 18 and are 14th in the 20-team league. They fared a little better in their opening Champions League encounter two weeks ago by beating lowly Ludogorets 2-1 at home. However, they didn’t seal the victory until captain Steven Gerrard scored on an injury-time penalty. Their last league game ended in a 1-1 draw at home at Anfield on Saturday when Phil Jagielka of Everton scored a last-minute goal in the Merseyside Derby. Rodgers also has some other players out with injuries as forward Emre Can has an ankle problem as does defenders Joe Allen. Defender Glen Johnson is also out of action with a knee injury.
Basel also has two wins, two losses and a draw in their past five games and are sitting on top of the table in the Swiss Super League with 22 points in 10 contests. However, they were handed a 5-1 beating on the road by Spain’s Real Madrid in their opening Champions League game two weeks ago. Manager Paulo Sousa is confident his side can do better in England though. Sousa feels his squad should be able to challenge Liverpool for second place in Group B and could advance to the next round of the event.
The last time Liverpool met Basel at St Jakob-Park was back in 2002 in a must-win UEFA Cup match for the English side. However, things didn’t work out very well for them as the Swiss team had a 3-0 lead by the 29th minute. Five-time European Champions Liverpool fought back, but it was too little too late as they could only manage a 3-3 draw.