Belfast Telegraph

Permutations explained: Four ways Liverpool can qualify for the Champions League knock-out stages ahead of crunch Napoli clash

Jurgen Klopp knows there is work to do in the Champions League (Martin Rickett/PA)
Jurgen Klopp knows there is work to do in the Champions League (Martin Rickett/PA)
Gareth Hanna

By Gareth Hanna

Liverpool's hopes of Champions League progression are going down to the final group game.

The Reds are third in the group table, three points behind leaders Napoli and two behind PSG with a game to play, when they host Napoli on December 11. So what do Jurgen Klopp's side need to make it through to the knock-out stages?

How Liverpool can qualify for the knock-out stages of the Champions League

1. If Liverpool beat Napoli by two clear goals, they will leapfrog the Italians by virtue of head to head record and make it through. That's how sides finishing level on points are separated in the group stage.

2. Liverpool will also progress if they win 1-0 at Anfield. That would leave the Reds tied with Napoli on H2H record and also on overall goal difference. The deciding factor would then be goals scored in the group, Liverpool's nine trumping Napoli's seven.

3. It all changes slightly if Liverpool win by any margin AND PSG draw at Red Star. That leaves PSG, Liverpool and Napoli all tied on nine points. The separation criteria then demands results against Red Star be discounted. In this eventuality, Liverpool's defeat to Red Star helps them out, leaving them on top of the group with six adjusted points to Napoli and PSG's five. Which of Napoli and PSG would progress depends on Napoli's result at Anfield.

4. A win by any margin coupled with a PSG defeat would send Liverpool through.

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