UEL: Liverpool FC – Beşiktaş JK

Updated: February 19, 2015

UEFA Europa League
Liverpool FC (ENG) – Beşiktaş JK (TUR)
Location: Anfield, Liverpool
Referee: S.Marciniak (POL)
Date: Thursday, February 19th
Time: 22:05 (GMT+2)
Channel: Star TV
Round of 32 (first leg)

Beşiktaş will face Liverpool in the first leg of the round of 32 against Liverpool FC at Anfield road.

The Black Eagles ended top of Group C in the Europa League, ahead of Tottenham Hotspur, while Liverpool ended third in their Champions League group to qualify for the UEFA Europa League round of 32.

It was nearly 8 years ago when these two teams last met, Beşiktaş won the first confrontation at the Inönü stadium: 2-1, with goals from Serdar Özkan and Bobô. However the second confrontation was one of the darkest moments in Beşiktaş’ club history. The match ended 8-0 at Anfield, to this date the biggest victory in the UEFA Champions League (bar the preliminary rounds).

The Beşiktaş players will be extremely motivated to restore honor to the club and it’s fans. Serdar Kurtuluş is the only player left in the Beşiktaş squad who actually lived through the emberassment at Anfield all those years ago.

This fixture won’t only bring back bad memories for Beşiktaş fans alone however, with Demba Ba’s return to Anfield for the first time since last season, the Liverpool fans will surely be reminded of how he shattered their title aspirations after scoring the 0-1 for Chelsea after Steven Gerrard’s infamous slip, which set up a 0-2 defeat at home. A defeat they could not recover from in the title race.

Beşiktaş will have to do with number one goalkeeper Tolga Zengin, understudy Cenk Gönen will have to take his place. A similar scenario as 8 years ago when Rüstü Reçber was injured and Hakan Arikan replaced him between the sticks.

The Black Eagles aren’t the only ones with injury woes however as Liverpool will be missing captain Steven Gerrard, Lucas Leiva and most probably striker Raheem Sterling with a foot injury. Markovic will also be missing from the matchday squad as he received a four match ban from UEFA.

Beşiktaş predicted XI:

Cenk Gönen; Serdar, Pedro Franco, Ersan Gülüm, Ramon Motta; Atiba Hutchinson, Veli Kavlak, José Sosa; Gökhan Töre, Olcay, Demba Ba

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Kaan Bayazit

Editor-in-chief at Beşiktaş International
Freelance sports writer specialized in Turkish football and Beşiktaş. Co-host of the Black Eagles podcast. Frequently featured in World Soccer Digest Japan and many other international media outlets. Following Turkish football for close to two decades. Proud father to Aedin.
Kaan Bayazit
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