Liverpool handed Napoli its first loss of the season, but the 2-0 win at Anfield did not come by a wide enough margin to win its UEFA Champions League group on Tuesday.
Mohamed Salah forced an 85th-minute loose ball over the line a moment after Darwin Nunez nearly did so, and Nunez then got his goal deep in stoppage time as Liverpool picked up a home win after losing to Leeds United at the weekend in the Premier League.
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The Reds will be unseeded in Friday’s group-stage draw, as Napoli won the group with a plus-15 goal differential thanks in large part to its 4-0 win over Liverpool in Naples on Matchday 1.
Liverpool joins Tottenham, Manchester City, and Chelsea as Premier League sides to advance to the knockout rounds, though the Reds will be unseeded in the knockout round draw.
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Mohamed Salah goal video: Reds end Napoli run
Mo Salah or Darwin Núñez?
Liverpool don't care how it goes in! 🔴 pic.twitter.com/MvyJdrC8K8
— CBS Sports Golazo ⚽️ (@CBSSportsGolazo) November 1, 2022
Darwin Nunez goal video
How to watch Napoli vs Liverpool live and start time
Klopp on current struggles: No quick fix
Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool has a lot of work to do to fix its current struggles.
Klopp is not expecting the Reds to be at their best any time soon following a loss to Leeds at the weekend, a second-successive Premier League loss to sandwich Ajax’s 3-0 win at Ajax.
Liverpool’s been better in the UEFA Champions League aside from a pounding at Napoli, and Tuesday’s group stage finale against Napoli at Anfield will ask a lot of it.
Napoli has not lost this season in either the UCL or Serie A. Sending the Italians home with a loss would send a message to Europe that Liverpool remains capable of magic.
“The situation now is not a quick fix,” Klopp said. “Consistency and stability is our issue. There are highs and there are obviously too many lows, that is clear. We cannot think about what happens in a few months. It’s the next game and the next game.
“Nobody will come here and say Liverpool are in a difficult moment, let’s give them an easy run. It’s the opposite, they can smell the opportunity. … There is always the chance to win the next game. There is always the chance to put things right. That is what we are working on.”
Liverpool want the group, yes, but does Jurgen Klopp want a seeded spot in the UEFA Champions League knockout rounds as much as he wants a top-four place in the Premier League? Liverpool are 10 points behind Tottenham with a match-in-hand ahead of Sunday’s match at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Does Klopp believe Tuesday to Sunday is enough rest to use the same squad twice? Probably not, as he rested precious few players in the loss to Leeds. Ibrahima Konate and Jordan Henderson, and Fabio Carvalho started on the bench.
The lowdown on Napoli
Napoli hasn’t lost this season, period. The Neapolitans have 10 wins and two draws to lead Serie A by five points and are a perfect 5-0 in UEFA Champions League play. Luciano Spaletti’s men romped past Sassuolo 4-0 at the weekend behind a Victor Osimhen hat trick. The Nigerian center forward is one of many attacking stars in the side, as Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, Hirving Lozano, Giacomo Raspadori, Giovanni Simeone, and Matteo Politano all have been delivering goals this season.
Liverpool team news, injuries, lineup options
Joel Matip is questionable to return but seems a longshot to feature, while still out are Luis Diaz, Naby Keita, Arthur, and Diogo Jota.
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Mohamed Salah’s late goal gives Liverpool home win over Napoli originally appeared on NBCSports.com