Liverpool have had a difficult start to their 2022-23 Premier League season, with just nine points to show for their first six games as they sit seventh in the table, six points back of current leaders Arsenal and five off presumptive favourites Manchester City.
It’s not the start anyone would have hoped for or expected, but Wednesday sees the focus turn to the Champions League and with it the chance to get off to a good start in Europe and build a little positive momentum heading into a busy two months of football.
“We love the Champions League, everybody does,” said goalkeeper Alisson Becker. “We are really excited about that and starting in the best way possible, playing against a big team that we have played in the last seasons. Everybody is really excited for that.”
The challenge for the Reds in their European opener is Napoli, a side they’ve faced four times already in the Jürgen Klopp era—and with the Reds trailing their Serie A opponents having recored a victory, a draw, and two losses by an aggregate 2-4 scoreline.
There’s a new manager for Napoli, though, in Luciano Spalletti. The club also stalwarts like Lorenzo Insigne, Arkadiuszk Milik, and Kalidou Koulibaly depart over the summer. All of which means while it’s the same team, they will pose a very different challenge.
“They changed a lot the way they play since the first time I played them for Liverpool in 2018,” Alisson added of facing a new-look Napoli. “They changed players, changed manager, they have a lot of young players full of energy and really talented players.
“We know that it’s going to be a really tough game for us. We have to put everything that we have, give 100% to get the three points, which is our main goal. It’s a big challenge for us, with not too much time to rest, but it’s the challenge that we want.”