Hoffenheim v Liverpool: Matchday blog
Liverpool defeated Hoffenheim 2-1 in Germany in their Champions League qualifying play-off first leg on Tuesday night - a game that featured Trent Alexander-Arnold's first senior goal for the club.
Read Jürgen Klopp's post-match assessment in full here...
Klopp: "I told Trent he has to take free-kicks. He and Ben Woodburn always have contests after training, they're both good at them. A very good free-kick.
"The second goal by a guy a little bit older was good too. Milly was very good for us, he helped us a lot."
Klopp: "Simon's penalty save gave us a real boost. We scored two goals and could've scored more.
"All good, so far. It's half-time."
Klopp: "If someone would've told me two hours ago we'd win tonight, I'd have taken each result, even 8-7!
"I am happy about the result."
That's it! Liverpool win 2-1!
An excellent away win here at the Rheni-Neckar-Arena. Alexander-Arnold's brilliant free-kick and Nordtveit's own goal, which came from great work by Firmino and Milner, puts the Reds in charge of the tie.
The Liverpool players are now saluting those in the away end - who were magnificent, as per usual.
Next Wednesday's second leg is set up to be a cracker!
A correction on the scoreboard here, as Liveprool's second goal has gone down as an own goal from Havard Nordtveit.
Hubner heads over a dangerous out-swinging free-kick.
Hoffenheim pushing for an equaliser...
Four minutes added on...
Grujic on for Mane for the closing few minutes
Grujic on for Mane for the closing few minutes
Uth pulls one back for the hosts...
Solanke on for Firmino, who has absolutely run his socks as usual.
'BOBBY FIRMINO!' chant the travelling Kop.
Great save, Simon!
Mignolet gets down well to precvent Hoffenheim pulling one back.
Dom Solanke's about to come on for the Reds.
JAMES MILNER MAKES IT 2-0!!
Was it a shot? Or was it a cross?! Who cares!!
Firmino plays the No.7 in down Liverpool's left and he cuts inside and curls a lovely, lofted effort into the far top corner.
Lovren's header is saved by Baumann. A second away goal would be nice, Reds...
Uth on for Gnabry for Hoffenheim, shortly after Salah sees a right-footed shot saved.
Gnabry sends a half-volley over the bar after a good spell of pressure from Hoffenheim.
Liverpool's first change is made, with Milner coming on for Henderson.
Now Trent goes into the book for dissent
First change for the hosts, as Amiri replaces Rupp
Emre Can goes into the referee's notebook for bringing down Wagner as Hoffenheim broke after Mane's low shot had been parried away by Baumann
Hoffenheim's Gnabry thinks he's equalised, but the assistant referee's flag is up to rule him offside.
It could, and maybe should, be 2-0 to Liverpool.
Firmino somehow sees his goal-bound effort from point-blank range saved.
We're back under way here in Germany. Can the Reds take a lead back to Anfield for next Wednesday's second leg?
And there's the half-time whistle.
An eventful, entertaining first period here at the Rhein-Neckar-Arena is over, with Simon Mignolet's penalty save and Trent Alexander-Arnold's breathtaking free-kick earning the Reds a 1-0 lead.
Dejan Lovren went agonisingly close to doubling the advantage with a header from Alberto Moreno's corner in the last action of the half, but all in all, an excellent first 45 for Liverpool.
Chance for Hoffenheim, but Wagner drags his shot wide from just inside the area.
TRENT ALEXANDER-ARNOLD!! WOW!!!
The teenager's first senior goal for the Reds, and what a time to get it!
Sadio Mane is cynically brought down after a great run through the centre. Trent steps up to curl home a 25-yard free-kick - as you do as an 18-year-old playing in a Champions League fixture for the first time...!
Sensational from the young Scouser!
There's been a slight lull in the last five minutes or so following a frenetic opening to the game.
Obviously, Mignolet's penalty save is the match's key moment thus far, but it's worth noting that Liverpool look very dangerous on the break and Hoffenheim are employing a pretty high defensive line.
So, so close from Salah...
That's Liverpool's best chance of the game so far. Firmino's throughball finds Salah, who races through the middle from halfway but places his right-footed shot wide of the post.
PEN SAVED BY MIGNOLET!
The Reds' 'keeper got down well to stop Kramaric's kick.
Well in, Simon!
Pen to Hoffenheim
Lovren adjudged to have fouled Gnabry, Kramaric to take the spot-kick...
That's really good play from Liverpool. Salah, Firmino, Mane and Moreno combine and Hoffenheim are forced to scramble the ball clear.
Great start to the game here in Germany.
A quite brilliant clearance from Joel Matip prevents Hoffenheim from having a clear sight of Simon Mignolet's goal after a good move down their right.
That's the first we've seen from the hosts in an attacking sense.
Mo Salah has the ball in the net after a confident start by the Reds, but his effort is ruled out for offside.
Liverpool get us under way, as the away end goes through a rendition of YNWA.
Come on, redmen!!
The teams are out and the famous Champions League anthem 'Zadok the Priest' rings out.
Kick-off is imminent...
As expected, Roberto Firmino's name gets a warm reception from the home fans as it's read out pre-match.
'FIRMINO!', the Sudkurve bellow in response to the announcer's 'Roberto'.
'The Fields of Anfield Road' is getting an airing from the away end here at the Rhein-Neckar Arena, which is filling up rapidly with kick-off 10 minutes away.
Now the stadium announcer - who is wearing a baseball cap with 'MIKE' written on the front of it in large lettering, so we'll assume that's his name - declares 'Welcome, Roberto Firmino!' to which the home fans respond with a loud round of applause and cheers for their former star.
A reminder of tonight's line-ups...
Liverpool's outfield players are now out to warm up.
John Achterberg is currently out on the pitch putting Liverpool's goalkeepers for this evening - Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius - through their paces with a vigorous work out. Danny Ward is also with them having travelled to Germany as part of the squad.
The Hoffenheim fans inside the stadium have responded to the message 'Welcome to everyone from Liverpool' with a warm round of applause. Nice touch.
WEATHER UPDATE FROM HOFFENHEIM
You know we'd never let you go without your fix of meteorological news bulletins.
Well, it's currently raining lightly at the Rhein-Neckar-Arena; however, it remains very, very warm and humid.
Definitely no need for a jacket of any description this evening.
A peek inside the Reds' dressing room...
Jürgen Klopp has elected to start with the same side that began Saturday’s draw at Watford here at the Rhein-Neckar-Arena...
Liverpool: Mignolet, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Lovren, Moreno, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Can, Mane, Salah, Firmino.
Subs: Karius, Klavan, Gomez, Milner, Grujic, Solanke, Origi.
The menu in the press room is offering wiener schnitzel and roast potatoes to members of the media this evening.
"Delicious," is Liverpoolfc.com scribe Sam Williams' simple yet emphatic verdict.
'Welcome back, Roberto'
A nice tribute to the Reds' No.9 in the programme...
Tonight's matchday programme...
More pics from Rhein-Neckar-Arena...
You have to say, the scene is set...
Here's how BetVictor price up tonight's tie...
Hoffenheim - 21/10
Draw - 13/5
Liverpool - 13/10
Click here if you fancy a flutter.
Superb.... the travelling Reds have made their presence felt in style...
The gaffer spoke to the media about the tie - and more - on Monday evening and you can watch the key points of his press conference below...
'They are like a chameleon'
To learn more about the challenge of facing Hoffenheim, we spoke to German football expert Raphael Honigstein - who provided a fascinating overview of a team who have beaten the odds in the last decade and now have one of the country's leading young coaches at the helm.
Click here to read the Q&A.
Here's a stat for you...
These two sides have never previously met and Hoffenheim will be the 126th different opponent the Reds have faced in European competition.
Here is that 22-man squad in full...
Alexander-Arnold, Moreno, Lovren, Milner, Wijnaldum, Henderson, Can, Mane, Salah, Firmino, Kent, Solanke, Origi, Gomez, Klavan, Flanagan, Robertson, Matip, Grujic, Mignolet, Karius, Ward.
Philippe Coutinho remains unavailable with a back issue and the game comes just too soon for Daniel Sturridge, who is expected to return at the weekend.
The Reds trained at Rhein-Neckar-Arena, the venue for tonight's game, after arriving into Germany on Monday afternoon. Klopp has brought a 22-man squad for the contest.
Let's dive straight in with a weather report.
The sun is shining in Hoffenheim, with temperatures currently at a very pleasant 26 degrees. There is a caveat, however. Storms are forecast for later in the day and that number will drop significantly by kick-off.
Glad to have you with us for another live matchday blog - and a hugely important game for Liverpool.
The Reds take on Hoffenheim tonight in the first leg of their Champions League play-off, with a spot in the group stages at stake in this tie.
We're in Germany with Jürgen Klopp and the squad to bring you updates throughout the day and during the match itself. Stay right here.