UEFA confirm that Liverpool and RB Leipzig will play the first leg of their Champions League fixture in Budapest
According to UEFA, Liverpool will travel to the Puskas Arena in Budapest to take on RB Leipzig in the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 tie on 16th February.
The first leg which was scheduled to be held in Leipzig had to be relocated thanks to Germany’s stringent COVID-19 protocols. The German interior ministry revealed last week that the match does not qualify as an exception and both teams will have to deal with the current reality.
With just under two weeks to go before the game, the matter has now been resolved and both clubs now know what they will have to do. It will be Liverpool’s first trip to the Hungarian capital after the stadium was completed in 2019.
The Battle of Germany?
The match represents a fascinating tactical duel between two top German managers. Julian Nagelsmann’s Leipzig are an exciting side that has troubled some of Europe’s top teams. They made it all the way to the semifinals of the Champions League last season, triumphing Liverpool’s conquerers Atletico Madrid in the last eight.
Nagelsmann and Klopp have already faced off twice when TSG Hoffenheim took on Liverpool in the Champions League qualifiers in 2017. The Reds won both games before going on to compete in Europe’s top competition, eventually making it to the final. Armed with a better side, Liverpool will face more of a test from Nagelsmann this time around.
Jurgen Klopp’s side were knocked out in the first knockout round last season thanks to a goalkeeping blunder by Adrian. The Reds will be hoping to do better this time around. The German has led Liverpool to three major European finals and will be aiming to reach a fourth this year.
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The return leg will be played at Anfield on March 10. This will be the first competitive meeting between both sides. Leipzig qualified for the last 16 at the expense of our arch-rivals Manchester United courtesy of a 3-2 win on matchday six of the group stages.