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Liverpool chasing Champions League first as Mo Salah nears new club record

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Liverpool could record a 100 percent win rate in the Champions League group stage with victory over AC Milan, while Mohamed Salah can set another club record.

Tonight, Liverpool could become the first English club to win all six games of a Champions League group phase.

Prior to this season the feat had only been achieved seven times, though Bayern Munich and Ajax could also join the elite group as they both currently have a 100 percent record.

They have never before won all three of their away games in any European group phase and if they do win this match it will be the seventh time an English team has done so.

Chelsea and Man United have done so twice with Arsenal and Man City doing so on a single occasion.

They could also win six games in a row in the Champions League proper for the first time ever, though they did so in the 2005/06 qualifying phase.

They already became the sixth English team to win their first five group games of a campaign, following United (twice), City, Arsenal and Chelsea.

 

Another record for Mo!

PORTO, PORTUGAL - Tuesday, September 28, 2021: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after scoring the first goal during the UEFA Champions League Group B Matchday 2 game between FC Porto and Liverpool FC at the Estádio do Dragão. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Should he score, Salah will set a new club record for goals scored in the group stage of a European competition.

He has six goals so far, matching the total set by Roberto Firmino in 2017/18.

Salah could also become the first Liverpool player to score in five group games of the same European campaign.

He has netted in four as both he and Firmino did in 2017/18, while Steven Gerrard was the first to do in 2007/08 and again in 2008/09.

Salah has scored in eight of his last 10 Champions League appearances.

He has 32 European goals in total for the club (all in this competition) and is chasing down Steven Gerrard’s club record of 41 in all European competitions.

MADRID, SPAIN - Tuesday, October 19, 2021: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after scoring the third goal, from a penalty-kick, to makes the score 2-3 during the UEFA Champions League Group B Matchday 3 game between Club Atlético de Madrid and Liverpool FC at the Estadio Metropolitano. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The No. 11 has scored in each of Liverpool’s last six away games in Europe – a club record, beating his team-mate Firmino who netted in four on the spin in 2017/18.

Salah requires one goal to register 20 goals this season in all competitions.

If he scores before December 15, he will reach the landmark for the club in the third-fastest time by date behind only Ian Rush (November 8, 1986) and Roger Hunt (November 25, 1961).

 

Chasing an all-time scoring run

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Saturday, December 4, 2021: Liverpool's Divock Origi (C) celebrates with team-mates Trent Alexander-Arnold (L) and Mohamed Salah (R) after scoring an injury time winning goal during the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. Liverpool won 1-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The win at Wolves last Saturday saw Liverpool fail to score at least twice in an away game this season for the first time.

Have scored in 29 consecutive games in all competitions since failing to score against Real Madrid at Anfield in April 2021.

Only once in history have they gone on a longer run, that being 31 matches from April 1957 to January 1958 under Phil Taylor.

 

Away form

MADRID, SPAIN - Tuesday, October 19, 2021: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after scoring the winning third goal, from a penalty-kick, to makes the score 2-3 during the UEFA Champions League Group B Matchday 3 game between Club Atlético de Madrid and Liverpool FC at the Estadio Metropolitano. Liverpool won 3-2. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool have scored 39 goals in 12 away games this season in league and cup while in the last 15 games away from Anfield have found the net 48 times.

They have failed to score in the opening half in only two of the last 16 away games.

 

Milan vs. England

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, September 15, 2021: Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold celebrates scoring the 1st goal during the UEFA Champions League Group B Matchday 1 game between Liverpool FC and AC Milan at Anfield. (Pic by Paul Currie/Propaganda)

This will be Milan’s 43rd encounter with an English club.

In the previous 42, they have won 12 and lost 18 (the 2005 Champions League final being recorded as a loss).

In 18 games at home to English teams they have won nine, drawn four and lost five.

Those five defeats have come in the last six home games with the only win coming in the 4-0 defeat of Arsenal in the quarter-final of this competition in 2011/12.

They failed to score in four matches during that sequence.

 

Winless Zlatan

2GK00JX Milan, Italy, 12th September 2021. Zlatan Ibrahimovic of AC Milan reacts during the Serie A match at Giuseppe Meazza, Milan. Picture credit should read: Jonathan Moscrop / Sportimage

Zlatan Ibrahimovic is now 40 years old.

He was the club’s leading scorer last season with 17 goals in all competitions, 15 in the league.

He has scored once in six winless appearances against Liverpool – a late equaliser for United in a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford in 2017.

 

Tonight’s referee

PORTO, PORTUGAL - Wednesday, April 17, 2019: Referee Danny Makkelie consults VAR during the UEFA Champions League Quarter-Final 2nd Leg match between FC Porto and Liverpool FC at Est·dio do Drag„o. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Danny Makkelie takes charge of Liverpool for the second time this season – having also reffed the home game vs. Atletico Madrid on Matchday 4.

 

This season’s scorers

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 1, 2021: Liverpool's Diogo Jota celebrates after scoring the fourth goal during the FA Premier League match between Everton FC and Liverpool FC, the 239th Merseyside Derby, at Goodison Park. Liverpool won 4-1. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

AC Milan: Ibrahimovic 6, Leao 5, Diaz 4, Giroud 4, own goals 4, Kessie 3, Messias 3, Calabria 2, Rebic 2, Tonali 2, Bennacer 1, Hernandez 1, Maldini 1, Romagnoli 1, Saelemaekers 1

Liverpool: Salah 19, Jota 9, Mane 9, Firmino 6, Minamino 4, Origi 4, Henderson 3, Keita 3, Thiago 2, Alexander-Arnold 1, Fabinho 1, Jones 1, Van Dijk 1, own goals 1


* Stats courtesy of LFC statistician Ged Rea (@ged0407).

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