Basle v Liverpool
Valencia v Spartak
Liverpool must beat Swiss surprise package Basle if they are to progress to the second stage of the Champions league.
Basle who have already knocked Celtic out of this season’s premier European competition, only need a draw to consign Liverpool to the same fate.
For the visitors, defender Stefan Henchoz has yet to recover from injury, so Liverpool are expected to field the same side which unexpectedly lost to Middlesbrough in the Premiership on Saturday.
It is likely that Emile Heskey will be asked to play in a more advanced role, adding a more physical presence to the attack.
Liverpool’s manager, Gerard Houlier, is confident his side can get a result.
“We have shown in the past that when we have to get a result – we are quite capable of getting it”, he said.
He continued: “Basle seem to think they’re already through, they seem to have forgotten they still have a game to play against us.”
Basle will be happy with a repeat of the result from their visit to Anfield. Despite intense pressure throughout the game, they escaped with a highly creditable 1-1 draw.
Former Tottenham manager Christian Gross is able to call on the services of Australian midfielder Scott Chipperfield, who has recovered from a ligament injury. Star striker, Christian Gimenez has returned from a minor injury and is likely to replace Herve Tum in attack.
Elsewhere in the group, Valencia, who have already qualified, entertain Spartak Moscow, who have yet to pick up a point in their five previous matches.