Liverpool to play against Hoffenheim in UCL Playoffs
Reds, mark your calendars for August 16 and August 24: the dates when Liverpool will face the German club TSG 1899 Hoffenheim away and home in their bid to enter the group stages of the UEFA Champions League 2017/18. The playoff draw, announced yesterday at Nyon, Switzerland by UEFA will mean that Liverpool will play against Roberto Firmino’s former club in little under 2 weeks time.
Hoffenheim, like Liverpool, finished fourth in their home league last season and qualified for the playoff spot and will indeed be a tough opponent for the Reds. With players like the Croatia international Andrej Kramarić, who scored 18 goals in last season’s campaign and the German international Sandro Wagner, who scored 12, Liverpool’s defenders need to be at their level best to prevent incoming goals. The team also had the second best defensive record in the Bundesliga last season, with only 27 goals conceded in 34 games and no opponents able to score more than 2 goals past their goalkeeper Oliver Baumann in any game.
However, with new signings and a wonderful pre-season, Liverpool will have the upper hand against the Germans.This will be the first time the club will be playing in the UEFA Champions League since 2014/15, when the Reds were eliminated from the group stages.