By 90Min
February 14, 2018

Liverpool will fancy their chances of progressing to the quarter finals of the Champions League this season. That is not only because Porto are a more favourable Last 16 opponent that most, but also because the Portuguese club's weaknesses seem to play to the Reds' strengths.

With Jurgen Klopp's self proclaimed brand of 'heavy metal' football, Liverpool have a reputation for pressing from the front and starting games hard and fast.


According to research from LeoVegas Sport, that is likely to stand them in good stead for this one. History shows that Porto have conceded 25% of all the goals they have leaked at this stage of the competition in the first 15 minutes. That figure is 63% when applied to the whole first half.

It would appear that the 2003/04 European champions are traditionally slow starters and therefore the exact team that Liverpool would want to face.

Klopp's men must be careful, though. Porto are strong at Estadio Dragao, where Wednesday night's first leg will take place and have actually only been beaten once on home soil in a single game at this stage of the Champions League - that was last season when Juventus won 1-0.


The other thing for Liverpool to be wary of is Porto's stronger second half performances. Coincidentally, 63% of their Last 16 goals have been scored after the interval. That is important for the Reds after throwing away group stage leads in two games against Sevilla this season.

Ultimately, Liverpool should have what it takes to win the tie as Porto have only been beyond the Last 16 once in the last eight seasons.

And when it comes to the second leg at Anfield next month, Porto's away form at this stage of the Champions League is generally poor - they have still never won an away leg. Even when they progressed further, including against Manchester United in 2003/04, it has generally been strong home performances and away draws that have got them there.

Laurence Griffiths/GettyImages

Victory over Manchester United 14 years ago remains the only time that Porto have knocked an English side out at the Last 16. In the years since, Chelsea (2006/07) and Arsenal (2009/10) have both prevailed against the Portuguese giants.

 (You may also be interested in '7 of the Best Players to Join Champions League Clubs in January Ahead of the Last 16 Stage')

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