Liverpool are in pole position to advance to the semi-finals of the Europa League after picking up an impressive 1-1 draw away at Borussia Dortmund last week. Jurgen Klopp’s men will fancy their chances against the Bundesliga outfit in front of a sell-out Anfield crowd and this may be Liverpool’s only way of qualifying for next season’s Champions League. The Reds have improved considerably since Klopp arrived at the helm but have struggled to climb up the Premier League table after a number of inconsistent efforts against the division’s “lesser” sides. Having said that, all will be forgotten if the German can lead Liverpool back into Europe’s elite club competition.
But while the Reds will take a slight advantage into the second leg, Dortmund remain dangerous and Liverpool will need to have their wits about them if they are to qualify for the next round. Betway now price the Reds at even money to reach the semi-finals whilst the Bundesliga side remain slight favourites at 4/5 – it’s certainly going to be an intriguing battle in the second leg at Anfield. And while Liverpool will be without club captain Jordan Henderson for the remainder of the season, they have enough talent in the central midfield area to cope without the former Sunderland star. The likes of Emre Can, Lucas Leiva and James Milner have plenty of experience and the German may be the man to slot immediately into that midfield position upon his return from suspension.
Thursday’s clash with Dortmund is season-defining for Klopp’s men. If they win, the Reds will be in pole position to claim yet another major European trophy but elimination will ensure they will go without silverware once again. Klopp is certainly the right man to guide Liverpool back to the summit of English football but it will take time. A loss to Dortmund at Anfield won’t be the end of the world. The German side are an exceptional outfit but Liverpool supporters are already dreaming of trips to Madrid, Paris and Munich next season. And with the Europa League almost certainly out of the question, it’s Champions League or bust for Klopp’s men.
Can Liverpool advance past Dortmund? Whilst it won’t be easy, Klopp’s men remain in a great position and an early goal could help to settle a few nerves at Anfield on Thursday evening. The Bundesliga side pose a major threat but, with a bit of luck, Liverpool could secure a semi-final spot as they hunt the ultimate prize of guaranteed Champions League football for the 2016-17 campaign.