A Yossi Benayoun hat trick and a Dirk Kuyt tap in ensured Liverpool cruised to back to back wins against Bolton and Burnley. It was a comprehensive 4-0 thrashing for the Reds, setting up for the match against Hungarian champions Debreceni nicely.
With Liverpool 5th in the Premier League, the focus switches to European football at Anfield on Wednesday night.
The reds have not faced Debreceni in any encounter before. In fact, the Reds have never faced any of our Group E opponents in competitive football – and have only met Fiorentina twice before – both in friendly matches.
Javier Mascherano suffered a knock while on international duty with Argentina, and stayed behind in Argentina to receive treatment.
Fabio Aurelio could make his comeback from injury in this game, but due to the fine form of Emiliano Insua and the lack of match fitness, he might only settle for a place on the bench. Meanwhile, Alberto Aquilani and Daniel Agger will miss the game as they are still out with injuries.
Liverpool qualified for the Champions League group stage without needing to pass through the qualifying round after they finished second last season.
As for Debreceni, they kicked off qualifying for their campaign back in July, and over two legs they came through Kalmar of Sweden, followed by Lavadia Tallinn, and most lately, a 4-1 aggregate scoreline over Leveski Sofia to secure their passage to the group stage.
Liverpool –(from) Reina, Johnson, Carragher, Skrtel, Insua, Gerrard, Lucas, Riera, Kuyt, Benayoun, Torres, Cavalieri, Degen, Dossena, Kyrgiakos, Ngog, Spearing, Voronin.
The team that played against Burnley passed with such masterclass and roamed their way too easily, that Rafael Benitez might opt to send out an unchanged starting XI from the one that started against Burnley. Skrtel is fully fit after returning from injury, and is expected to partner alongside Jamie Carragher for the game. A few youngsters that came through the academy, might take their place on the bench.
Possible starting XI – Reina, Johnson, Carragher, Skrtel, Insua, Gerrard, Lucas, Benayoun, Riera, Kuyt, Torres
Debrecen VSC squad: Adam Komlosi, Adamo Coulibaly, Attila Katona, Csaba Bernath, Csaba Szatmari,David Mohl, Djordje Pantic, Dudu Omagbemi, Gergely Rudolf, Istvan Spitzmuller, Istvan Szucs, Istvan Verpecz, Jozsef Varga, Karoly Czanik, Laszlo Bodnar, Laszlo Rezes, Leal Vinicius Galvao, Leandro De Almeida, Lorant Olah, Luis Ramos, Marcell Fodor, Mihaly Korhut, Milan Faggyas, Mirsad Mijadinoski,Norbert Meszaros, Peter Biro, Peter Czvitkovics, Peter Mate, Peter Szakaly, Peter Szilagyi, Robert Feczesin, Robert Nagy, Tamas Huszak, Tamas Szelpal, Tibor Dombi, Vukasin Radomir Poleksic,Zoltan Kiss, Zoltan Nagy, Zoltan Szelesi, Zoltan Varga, Zsolt Laczko, Zsombor Kerekes
Debreceni secured a 1-0 victory against Paksi SE, in the Hungarian National Championships 2009/10 on Saturday.
Possible starting XI – Polekszics, Bernath, Fodor, Meszaros, Czvitkovics, Kiss, Szalaky, Varga, Leandro, Coulibaly, Olah
Debreceni are not experienced in top level European football. Despite being 2008/09 Hungarian champions, it would be a tough ask for them to get anything out of the game against Liverpool. Meanwhile Liverpool are buzzing after a flawless performance against Burnley. With the return of Aurelio and Yossi Benayoun at the peak of his form, it is going to be a very difficult game for the underdogs. I do expect Liverpool to run riot against Debreceni without needing to break a sweat.
Liverpool 4-0 Debreceni