LIVE: Hoffenheim vs Liverpool

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64′ A Hoffenheim free-kick is quickly knocked into the right-hand side of the Liverpool penalty area and towards Kaderabek. The wing-back is all alone and immediately whips a cross over to the far post, where Gnabry rises high but can’t get the better of Matip.

J. Milner

J. Henderson

Liverpool FC

63′ Liverpool have made their first change of the game, with James Milner coming on to replace Henderson.

62′ Salah does really well to tee up Can on the edge of the Hoffenheim penalty area and sets up the German to work the ball over to Firmino. He’s unable to do so though, as his first-time pass into the box is overhit and can only find Baumann.

60′ There’s an initially moment of worry for Hoffenheim as Nordtveit stays down after tangling with Mane, but, after receiving medical attention for a few moments, the Norwegian is able to continue.

59′ Can and Alexander-Arnold link up well after plenty of space is left available over on the right flank. The youngster takes a quick touch and then tries to pick out Firmino in front of goal, but his low cross is sent slightly too near to Baumann and the goalkeeper can easily deal with the danger.

57′ A long ball forward fails to find a blue shirt and allows Liverpool to counter-attack quickly. They initially break away well thanks to good play from Salah, but Can is closed down in the middle of the pitch and eventually loses the ball.

T. Alexander-Arnold

Yellow Card

Liverpool FC

55′ Hoffenheim have upped the tempo, and it seems to be causing plenty of problems for the under-pressure Liverpool back line. Alexander-Arnold gives away a throw-in and then complains about the decision, resulting in him receiving the latest booking.

N. Amiri

L. Rupp

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

53′ Hoffenheim have made another change, with Rupp making way for Nadiem Amiri.

53′ Nordtveit is almost presented with an immediate opportunity to test Mignolet from a corner, but the cross into the penalty area ends up flying just a yard or so over the head of the Norwegian.

H. Nordtveit

E. Bičakčić

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

52′ Hoffenheim have made their first substitution of the evening, with Havard Nordtveit coming on to replace Bicakcic.

E. Can

Yellow Card

Liverpool FC

51′ Demirbay bursts down the right flank as he tries to kick-start a swift counter-attack for the home side, but he’s cynically brought down from behind by Can and the Liverpool midfielder ends up being shown a yellow card.

50′ A curling cross from Alexander-Arnold is sent slightly too deep and can’t pick out a team-mate inside the penalty area, but Mane picks it up over on the left wing. The Senegal international quickly cuts into the box and shoots, but, once again, Baumann is able to save the effort.

49′ Gnabry scores, but it’s ruled out! A pass up to the Liverpool box isn’t dealt with by Lovren and allows Rupp to set up Gnabry. The former Arsenal forward breaks into the penalty area and then beats Mignolet at the near post, but as soon as the ball hits the back of the net, the linesman’s flag is rightly raised.

47′ What a chance for Roberto Firmino! Mane easily gets the better of Bicakcic over on the left flank before cutting into the penalty area. He then sets up Firmino to double Liverpool’s lead, but it’s sent straight at Baumann and fails to beat the Hoffenheim goalkeeper.

46′ Hoffenheim immediately push forward from the restart as Gnabry does really well to carve out some space for himself over on the left wing. He then whips a bouncing cross into the box and towards Wagner, but Moreno is just about able to cut out the danger with an outstretched leg.

46′ We’re underway once again!

The two teams are making their way back out on to the pitch ahead of the start of the second half. Neither side have made any substitutions during the half-time break.

It was a tough first half for a Liverpool side that spent much of the period on the back foot, but a world-class free-kick from Alexander-Arnold has given them the lead and, most importantly, a crucial away goal. Hoffenheim have caused plenty of problems at the other end of the pitch and looked dangerous when attacking, but the visitors have just about managed to contain them, despite a few nervy moments.


45′ + 2′ Lovren almost makes it 2-0! Liverpool are presented with one final chance on goal after winning a corner over on the left flank. It’s launched into the box and finds Lovren, who rises high and beats his marker but can only send his downward header bouncing just wide of the far post.

45′ + 1′ An excellent cross-field pass from Demirbay flies over to the right-hand side of the Liverpool box and picks out Kaderabek. The wing-back quickly sends a low cross into the middle of the penalty area and towards Rupp, who looks set to shoot but has the ball taken off him by Wagner, who is then dispossessed.

45′ The fourth official has indicated that there will be just one minute of added time.

44′ Another lofted pass is fired over the top of the Liverpool defence and towards the onrushing Gnabry, but this one is overhit and Mignolet is easily able to deal with the danger.

43′ Two huge chances for Hoffenheim! A long ball causes all sorts of problems for the Liverpool defence, allowing Gnabry to muscle his way into the box. He forces Mignolet into making a vital save before the ball rolls out to Wagner, who quickly shoots but sends his first-time strike bouncing off the outside of the near post.

41′ Liverpool have been on the front foot since going ahead, and they now seem to pressing with more purpose. They sat back slightly at the start of the game, but they’re now doing much better when trying to frustrate Hoffenheim.

39′ Salah and Alexander-Arnold link up well as the young defender gets himself into a great position once again. He then cuts inside and tries to penetrate the penalty area, but a poor touch lets him down at the last moment and knocks the ball behind for a goal-kick.

37′ Liverpool quickly win the ball back from the restart and pile bodies forward. Alexander-Arnold darts down the right flank and then sets up Can to shoot, but the German’s effort is easily stopped by Baumann at the near post.

T. Alexander-Arnold


Liverpool FC

35′ GOAL! Yes they can! Alexander-Arnold steps up and curls a perfect strike around the wall and into the bottom right-hand corner of the net. Baumann was left rooted to the spot and was left with no chance whatsoever by the youngster’s brilliant shot.

E. Bičakčić

Yellow Card

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

34′ Mane picks up the ball in a promising position and quickly storms forward, but he’s cynically bundled over by Ermin Bicakcic and wins a free-kick for Liverpool 30 yards away from goal. Can they make it count?

33′ Zuber loses the ball over on the right wing and allows Liverpool to counter quickly. Salah’s path is blocked off before Alexander-Arnold tries to whip in a cross, but he’s well dispossessed by Demirbay before he’s able to.

31′ Kramaric fires a great cross out to the right wing and towards Kaderabek fires a clever low cross that manages to pick out Lukas Rupp, who spins and shoots but can’t get the better of Matip in front of him.

30′ Wagner embarks on a good run as he dribbles his way past two Liverpool players and towards the penalty area. He then tries to tee up Gnabry, but the two don’t seem to be on the same wavelength and the visitors are able to hold on.

28′ Salah catches Zuber as the Swiss wing-back tries to spin round him, and Hoffenheim are awarded another free-kick in a dangerous position. Demirbay’s cross is a good one once again, but this time it’s Jordan Henderson who can clear the danger under pressure.

26′ Chance for Pavel Kaderabek! A long, looping cross from Demirbay flies into the Liverpool box and bounces over to Kaderabek. The wing-back is in a pocket of space and quickly unleashes a shot, but he can’t keep it down and sends it high and wide of its intended target.

24′ Wagner picks up the ball just outside of the Liverpool box and quickly spins round his marker. He cuts onto his right foot and manages to get a shot away, but his 20-yard effort isn’t hit well enough to test Mignolet and the goalkeeper can watch it sail comfortably wide.

22′ Another Hoffenheim attack fails to come to anything, and Liverpool then push forward on their own attacking move. Emre Can eventually picks out Georginio Wijnaldum on the edge of the penalty area, but the Dutchman’s first touch is heavy and knocks the ball away from him.

20′ Hoffenheim keep patiently working the ball around inside the Liverpool half of the pitch as they try to find an opening in front of them. The visitors look well organised, however, and they’re making life tough for their opponents.

18′ Good play by Hoffenheim eventually ends with a poor pass from Vogt over to the right flank. It’s quickly cut out by a white shirt and presents Liverpool with a chance to counter-attack, but the home side recover quickly and swiftly win the ball back.

16′ Space opens up for Alexander-Arnold over on the right channel and allows the youngster to fire a cross into the box, but Steven Zuber recovers well to deflect it behind for a corner.

14′ Huge opportunity for Salah to open the scoring! A terrible mistake by Kevin Vogt allows Salah to hit the hosts on a quick counter-attack. He breaks through the middle of the pitch and towards the penalty area before shooting, but, under pressure from Vogt, he can only send his side-footed strike just wide of the near post.

S. Mignolet

Penalty Save

Liverpool FC

12′ Mignolet did well to push Kramaric’s effort to his left and away from danger but that really was poor from the Croatian. He fired his effort way too close to the Belgian’s body, making it very easy to save.

A. Kramarić

Penalty Miss

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

12′ MISS! Andrej Kramaric is presented with an excellent opportunity to give his side an early lead, but he ends up firing a dreadful shot straight at Mignolet in the middle of the goal.

11′ Big call by the referee! Gnabry dances his way into the right-hand side of the Liverpool penalty area as space opens up for him. He takes on Lovren before going down under a tackle from the Croatian, and the referee eventually points to the spot after giving himself a few seconds to think.

9′ Moreno and Sadio Mane link up well before the latter breaks into the box. He heads along the byline and then tries to fizz a pass across the face of goal, but Oliver Baumann is there to get a toe on the ball at the near post.

7′ Wagner is bundled over midway inside the Liverpool half of the pitch, resulting in a free-kick for Hoffenheim in a promising position. A dangerous cross is fired in by Kerem Demirbay and meets Dejan Lovren, who doesn’t deal with the danger fully but just about manages to guide the ball into the hands of Mignolet.

6′ Vital interception by Joel Matip! Sandro Wagner easily gets the better of Alberto Moreno as he skips down the right flank on a wonderful run. He then curls a beautiful ball into the box, where Matip is just about able to get a toe onto it at the near post.

4′ A loose ball rolls down the left wing and is almost met by Serge Gnabry, but Simon Mignolet does well to rush out of his penalty area and deal with the danger at the vital moment.

2′ Mohamed Salah is presented with an early chance to fire Liverpool into the lead as he darts into the Hoffenheim box and latches on to a lovely pass from Trent Alexander-Arnold, but his run is slightly mistimed and the linesman’s flag is immediately raised as soon as he shoots.

1′ We’re off! Liverpool get us underway, attacking from left to right.

The two sides are making their way out onto the pitch, with just a few minutes to go until kick-off.

Meanwhile, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has named an unchanged side to the one that featured in their last outing, with youngster Trent Alexander-Arnold and the previously out-of-favour Alberto Moreno once again featuring in defence.

Julian Nagelsmann has decided to make six changes to the Hoffenheim side that started the cup win against Rot-Weiss Erfurt on the weekend, with Oliver Baumann, Benjamin Hubner, Pavel Kaderabek, Lukas Rupp, Steven Zuber and Serge Gnabry coming into the starting line-up to replace Gregor Kobel, Havard Nordtveit, Eugen Polanski, Jeremy Toljan, Nadiem Amiri and Nico Schulz.

Liverpool substitutes: Karius, Gomez, Klavan, Milner, Grujic, Solanke, Origi.

Liverpool XI (4-3-3): Mignolet; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Lovren, Moreno; Can, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane.

Hoffenheim substitutes: Kobel, Toljan, Geiger, Nordtveit, Amiri, Uth, Szalai.

Hoffenheim XI (3-4-3): Baumann; Bicakcic, Vogt, Hubner; Kaderabek, Rupp, Demirbay, Zuber; Gnabry, Wagner, Kramaric.

There’s just over 15 minutes left to go until kick-off, so let’s have a look at how the two teams will be lining up this evening…

Liverpool will also have to go into battle with several key names still unavailable. Adam Lallana, Daniel Sturridge and Nathaniel Clyne were unable to feature on the weekend and can’t do so again tonight, whilst the absence of Philippe Coutinho, for whom the Reds have turned down two bids from Barcelona, will also be a big miss for Jurgen Klopp.

With the new Bundesliga season not getting started until Saturday, Hoffenheim are relatively well rested, despite some of their squad having to play a DFB-Pokal game against Rot-Weiss Erfurt on Saturday. Liverpool, on the other hand, were given a manic runaround by Watford in their Premier League opener, and they’ll have to improve defensively if they’re to keep at bay their frantic and attack-minded opposition tonight.

Under the watchful eye of 30-year-old Julian Nagelsmann, Hoffenheim have enjoyed an excellent rise up the Bundesliga table. After first saving the club from relegation, the young manager then guided them to their best-ever league finish, resulting in a first appearance in a European competition for a club that just 11 years ago were fighting for promotion from the third tier.

Despite only being midway through August, tonight’s game arguably represents one of Liverpool’s biggest of the season. The Reds are favourites to progress to the group stage of the Champions League but will be well aware that they can’t afford to slip up against an impressive Hoffenheim team that finished just two points behind Borussia Dortmund last season.

Good evening and welcome to our live text commentary of today’s Champions League play-off first leg clash between Hoffenheim and Liverpool at the Rhein Neckar Arena.