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AFP
September 19, 2019

Liverpool begin Champ League defence with Napoli defeat

Sports

AFP
September 19, 2019

NAPLES: Dries Mertens and Fernando Llorente scored late as holders Liverpool fell 2-0 at Napoli in the opening match of their Champions League title defence on Tuesday.

Mertens converted a penalty on 82 minutes and Llorente added a second in stoppage time as Napoli gained a measure of revenge for last season’s 1-0 defeat at Anfield that denied the Italians a spot in the knockout rounds. The loss for Jurgen Klopp’s side makes them first reigning European champions to lose their opening game of the following campaign since AC Milan in 1994.

However Liverpool, who sit top of the Premier League after five straight wins, remain favourites alongside Napoli to progress from Group E despite Salzburg’s thrilling 6-2 win over Genk.

“Give us a few more games to change the table, but it looks like Napoli are through,” said Klopp, who tipped the Italians to go far.

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