Napoli crest

Mertens (pen, 82)
Llorente (90+2)

2 - 0
UEFA Champions League
20:00 Tue 17th Sep 2019
Location: Stadio San Paolo
Liverpool FC crest
Liverpool FC

20:00 Tue 17th Sep 2019
20:00 Tue 17th Sep 2019 Stadio San Paolo

Napoli v Liverpool: Live matchday blog

Liverpool suffered a first defeat of 2019-20 as their defence of the Champions League began with a 2-0 reversal to Napoli in Italy. Late goals from Dries Mertens (penalty) and Fernando Llorente gave the hosts victory at the Stadio San Paolo.

And here's how Group E looks after matchday one...

A round-up of today's Champions League scores...

A look at tonight's match stats, via Opta...

Full Time

Napoli 2-0 Liverpool

Liverpool begin their Champions League campaign with defeat in Italy as they go down 2-0 to Napoli at the Stadio San Paolo.

The hosts struck twice in the final moments to clinch victory on matchday one as Dries Mertens first converted from the penalty spot on 82 minutes before Fernando Llorente struck 10 minutes later.



Goal for Napoli - Fernando Llorente

The hosts have a second as the ball spins across the area from Van Dijk and Llorente reacts quickest to prod beyond Adrian from close range..


A minimum of five added minutes to be played...



Shaqiri comes on for Henderson for the Reds.



Mertens rattles in the resulting penalty and Napoli lead.



Penalty to Napoli

Robertson brings down Callejon and the hosts have a spot kick.



Napoli make their final change and Allan is replaced by Elmas.



Firmino and Mane play a one-two to open up Napoli, but the latter's stab goalwards is saved by Meret.



Firmino and Mane play a one-two to open up Napoli, but the latter's stab goalwards is saved by Meret.



Another Napoli change sees Llorente replace Lozano.



Changes for both teams...

Wijnaldum on for Milner for the Reds and Zielinski replaces Insigne for the hosts.



Changes for both teams...

Wijnaldum on for Milner for the Reds and Zielinski replaces Insigne for the hosts.



Manolas makes a mess of an attempted clearance and allows Salah a clear strike across goal. But a strong hand from Meret pushes it behind.


Yellow Card

A yellow for James Milner for a challenge on Callejon.


Mane and Salah break at pace from a Napoli corner but the former's pass is too far in front of the latter with Manolas between them and a clear shot on goal



Liverpool need a fantastic save from Adrian to keep the scoreline goalless as Mertens finds space at the back post unmarked and hooks a close-range volley towards the top corner from Mario Rui's cross.


Off we go again...

Napoli re-start the game at the Stadio San Paolo.

Here's a full run down of tonight's half-time scores in the Champions League...

Meanwhile in Austria...

...Salzburg are 5-1 up at the break against Genk in the other game in Group E.

Here's how Opta saw the first half...

Half Time

Napoli 0-0 Liverpool

An absorbing first-half contest comes to a close without a goal at the Stadio San Paolo.


Milner takes the subsequent corner, which Firmino glances not too far wide of the post.


A superb Liverpool counter almost sees Milner release Salah, but Manolas makes a superb recovery challenge to stop the cross.


Elsewhere in Group E...

...Red Bull Salzburg are 3-0 up at home to Genk.


Important challenge from Alexander-Arnold halts Insigne inside the area as the striker looked to turn and shoot.


Matip needs to head away Mertens' centre before Lozano can reach it in the six-yard box.


Salah gets the better of Koulibaly this time, but has a shot blocked. Mane rolls it off to Milner who drills over.


Fabinho wins the ball back high up the field once again and Henderson's pings it forward. Mane scampers into space inside the area, but his drive towards the near post is repelled by Meret.


Fabian Ruiz drills a cross back into the Liverpool six-yard box, but the Reds manage to clear.


Fabinho wins the ball back deep inside the Napoli half and sends Salah into the area; however, this time he is halted by Koulibaly.


Disallowed Goal

Napoli catch Liverpool on the counter and Adrian twice saves from drives from Fabian Ruiz.

Eventually, Lozano heads the ball over the line, but he's flagged offside.


The Reds


Salah speeds into the area onto a clever pass down the line from Henderson, but he's crowded out by Mario Rui and Koulibaly.


And we're off...

Liverpool's defence of the Champions League is under way as they begin the game in Italy against Napoli.

Come on you Reds!


And here's the anthem.

You know, that anthem.


Here come the teams as Liverpool prepare to begin their defence of the Champions League...


Warming up...

AXA - LFC principal partner and official training kit partner


Klopp explains team selection

Jürgen Klopp has explained his decision to make three changes to his side for a fixture that he predicts is going to be incredibly 'intense'.

Speaking to BT Sport pre-match, the Reds boss said: “We need to be intense tonight and for that we need some fresh legs.

“We have that now in two positions in a very decisive area of the pitch. That’s clear. That was the plan for the line-up.”

He added: "It will be tricky, it will be lively. It has to be intense, you cannot play here with 50, 60, 70, 80 or 90 per cent; you have to play 100 per cent and that’s the plan obviously.

“Being brave with the ball yourself and play football, but first and foremost defend as well as possible because that’s a big strength of them, they are really flexible with that line-up."


Here's how Opta predict both teams will set up this evening... 



Andy Robertson starts as Liverpool make three changes in Napoli tonight, with Roberto Firmino, Jordan Henderson and James Milner coming in for Divock Origi, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Georginio Wijnaldum.

Liverpool: Adrian, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Milner, Henderson, Mane, Salah, Firmino.

Subs: Kelleher, Wijnaldum, Lovren, Gomez, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lallana, Shaqiri.


Andy Robertson update

Andy Robertson is fit to take part in Liverpool’s Champions League tie with Napoli at the Stadio San Paolo this evening.

The defender missed the Reds’ training session at Melwood on Monday due to a slight knock – and Jürgen Klopp confirmed his fitness would be further assessed in Italy to determine whether he could be in contention for tonight’s encounter.

The club’s medical team have since confirmed Robertson is available for selection and will, therefore, be included in the matchday squad.


We'll have confirmed team news from Stadio San Paolo in around half an hour.



Here we go...

We'll keep this one brief: it's warm, humid and clear on this late summer's eve in Naples.

No need for autumnal wear.


Hendo sets his sights

He lifted the Champions League trophy just three months ago but Jordan Henderson has no doubt this Liverpool team will continue to push for as much success as possible.

"We're always hungry for more, we always want to improve and we always feel we can do better of course," said the Reds captain ahead of the clash with Napoli.

"Last season is last season. Of course we can take experience from the campaign and the year before as well. We can take that into this campaign but ultimately we feel as though we're still improving. We can still do a lot of things better.

"Let's go for everything. Everything is possible again, so we want to challenge in every game we play."


Stat attack

  • Liverpool are unbeaten in 13 opening group games of a European campaign (eight wins and five draws) since losing at Valencia in 2002
  • The Reds have kept six clean sheets in their last nine visits to Italy
  • They are three goals short of 450 under Jürgen Klopp in all competitions

  • Mohamed Salah (16), Roberto Firmino (15) and Sadio Mane (14) are behind only Steven Gerrard (30) on Liverpool's all-time European Cup goalscorers list
  • Mane has scored six goals in six appearances this season and 23 in his last 29 for the Reds

Ancelotti's preview

Carlo Ancelotti is excited at the thought of kicking off Napoli's 2019-20 Champions League with, in his opinion, the toughest test of them all.

Speaking at a press conference yesterday afternoon, he said: "It's the start of a great adventure and our aim of course is to reach the next round.

"We're playing the best team in Europe and they haven't dropped any points in the Premier League yet.

"Liverpool have improved because winning the Champions League gives you belief. Napoli have improved too though and we've bolstered our squad with the addition of some quality players.

"I think it will be a great game – hard fought and intense."


Matchday one

Here's the full fixture list in the Champions League this evening...


All the goals

Whet your appetite for Liverpool's latest Champions League adventure by watching every goal on their journey to European Cup No.6 last season...


Fabinho: We can handle expectations

After back-to-back Champions League final appearances and glory in Madrid in June, Fabinho feels it's natural the Reds are considered among the favourites in this season's competition.

But none of that chatter has an influence on the pitch, insists the Brazilian.

"The reigning champion is always the favourite and given Liverpool's run of form over the last two competitions we must be considered one of the main contenders," he said.

"But it doesn't put any additional pressure on us, we know how to deal with it, we know how to handle the pressure. It won't be a problem.

"The Champions League is the toughest competition in Europe with all the best teams involved. We'll do everything to qualify for the Round of 16. It's a case of taking things step by step."


Missing Men

Another game, another tricky Liverpool brainteaser for you.

The Reds kicked off their 2015-16 Europa League campaign on this day four years ago - but can you remember the starting XI that faced Bordeaux in France that night?

Click the graphic to reveal the answers...


Five out of five

Liverpool come into this European clash off the back of a fifth consecutive win to start the new Premier League season. See the best of their comeback victory over Newcastle in the highlights below...


Three key battles

After these two sides traded 1-0 home wins in the group stage last season, where might this meeting be won and lost? We have picked out three one-on-one duels that could influence the final result.

Click here to read more.


U19s draw with Napoli

We have a final score from Liverpool U19s' UEFA Youth League opener against their Napoli counterparts and Layton Stewart's late equaliser has secured a 1-1 draw for the Reds.


Team news

The Reds are without Divock Origi for their Champions League opener - the forward is out for a short period due to the ankle injury he picked up against Newcastle at the weekend.

Andy Robertson also sustained a knock on Saturday but he did travel as part of the 20-man squad; an assessment of his fitness was planned for today.

Napoli have no fresh injury concerns, though striker Arkadiusz Milik has not featured yet this season due to a groin issue.


Did you know?

Roberto Firmino could make his 200th appearance for Liverpool tonight.


Pre-match press conference

The media duties were handled by the boss and the captain after Liverpool touched down in Naples on Monday evening - and you can see everything Klopp and Henderson had to say about the game below...


Weekend action

Napoli warmed up for tonight's game by beating Sampdoria 2-0 in Serie A.

Dries Mertens scored twice at Stadio San Paolo on Saturday evening as Carlo Ancelotti's side sit sixth in the table after three fixtures.


Melwood training

Jürgen Klopp put his players through a workout at their West Derby training complex on Monday morning before jetting out to Italy.

You can look back on part of the session in the video and photo gallery below...


Important info for fans travelling to Naples

Fans making the journey to Italy for the game are advised to download the travel advice by clicking here.


Trent out for more

Liverpool won't rest on their laurels after last season's success, Trent Alexander-Arnold has vowed.

The right-back is out to ensure that the triumph over Tottenham Hotspur in June was just the start of a long and prosperous spell for the club.

He told the Champions Journal magazine: “After beating Spurs, there were celebrations but with the sense that: ‘This is literally just the beginning. There’s so much more that this team can do.’

“Nearly every player in every position is world-class and not many, if any, have even hit the heights they can at their full potential, which is incredible.

“The manager talks about it all the time. We’re still a young side, we’re still learning. We need to evolve, adapt and become better. It’s exciting.”


The last meeting

Napoli again accompany Liverpool in the same Champions League group, of course.

The last competitive encounter between the two sides was undoubtedly a thriller. A wonderful goal and save right at the death secured the Reds' spot in the knockout rounds.

Relive that night in the highlights video below...


Buon pomeriggio

Good afternoon from Naples!

So, Liverpool begin the defence of their Champions League trophy against Napoli this evening. It seems like only a few days ago that we were celebrating that wonderful night in Madrid...

Anyhow, stick with us throughout the day as we bring you the very best of the build-up, action and post-match reaction from the south of Italy.