Group D should be the one with the highest efficiency here. It features the Premier League’s finest, Liverpool, the most efficient team of top 5 European leagues, Atalanta, and always offensive Ajax, with the addition of Danish champions, Midtjylland.
The Reds are no enigma for anyone. They are here to win the UCL, and anything else below this is a failure for them, simple as that. Jurgen Klopp won the Premiership, and after clinching the Champions League the year before, the German manager has enough credit for the next five years. But he doesn’t want to rest, and already aims for another challenge. He already indicated that the next goal is winning both the EPL and UCL.
That is why he brought Thiago Alcantara from Bayern Munich, and Diogo Jota from Wolverhampton. Liverpool needed to strengthen in all areas because of the upcoming challenges, but the recent additions won’t change anything in their play philosophy. It would be offensive and aggressive as always.
We have something to tell you right away. We don’t think that Ajax can finish second, in this group. Unlike the years before where they looked fine, the Lancers are no longer a team that we watched and enjoyed after the sale last season. Ziyech, Van de Beek, Sergino Dest, are the most recent departures, and on the incoming side, there are no potential bombs.
Dusan Tadic still leads the team, but he isn’t the shadow of a player who used to humiliate Real Madrid, and Ajax struggles because of that. David Neres is not playing as expected, and the only bright spot so far is Anthony.
We know that it is early on to say something like this, but this is just our hunch.
On the other hand, La Dea started the campaign in the same manner as it played the previous one – flamboyant, efficient, and attractive. We have to admit that we do have some affection towards this team, but everything said here is true.
A very important thing is that they didn’t have too many departures from Atleti Azzurri Stadium. Timothy Castagne left for Leicester and Amad Diallo to United, but this duo’s absence will be covered. Meanwhile, Aleksey Miranchuk and Sam Lammers landed, two guys who have high potential and can bring more cash in a year or two for Atalanta.
The team’s leaders, Papu Gomez, Josip Ilicic, Mario Pasalic, Duvan Zapata, etc, are all present, and the core of the unit wasn’t changed.
The Danish champion reached the UCL through the qualifiers, beating Slavia Praha in the playoffs, and coming back from behind in the decisive leg. They are a modest team, whose top acquisition this summer cost less than $3 million – Pione Sisto from Celta Vigo.
Midtjylland doesn’t have a quality for the UCL. Yet his players are preferring a brave approach and aren’t defending against anyone. It might result in some catastrophe against L’Pool or Atalanta, but for them, reaching the elite is already a vast success.
Liverpool and Atalanta are bound to be at the top two places in this group. Both sides look better than Ajax, who will be third for sure because the Danes aren’t a threat to them. But for all of you punters, do know that this should be one of the groups with the most goals scored, if not the most efficient one.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.