Champions League semi-final preview: Liverpool v Roma, Bayern Munich v Real Madrid - Team news, odds

Semi-final preview: Salah and Ronaldo dominate build-up to first-leg encounters

24/04/2018 at 13:03Updated 24/04/2018 at 14:03

We bring you all the team news, manager and player quotes, odds and more ahead of the Champions League semi-finals.

The Champions League semi-final first-leg encounters take place this week, with Liverpool hosting Roma on Tuesday before Bayern welcome holders Real Madrid on Wednesday.

Who will reach the Champions League final?

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4481 vote(s)
Liverpool & Real Madrid
Liverpool & Bayern Munich
Roma & Real Madrid
Roma & Bayern Munich

Having left Roma for Liverpool in the summer, Mohamed Salah has dominated the build-up in what will be his first match since picking up the PFA Player of the Year award.

Meanwhile, Bundesliga champions Bayern are aiming to end Real’s dream of a third-straight Champions League title. To do so they will have to stop Cristiano Ronaldo, who has scored in every Champions League game this season – 15 in total.


RonaldoGetty Images

Here’s a look at the finer details of the upcoming semi-finals…

Team news

Liverpool: Adam Lallana, Joel Matip and Emre Can all out. Dejan Lovren and Joe Gomez could return.

Roma: Rick Karsdorp and Gregoire Defrel are both out.

Bayern: Arturo Vidal, Kingsley Coman and Manuel Neuer are absent.

Real: Nacho is only the absentee for Real.

The managers

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp: “They [the Liverpool fans] create one of the most special atmospheres in world football. Can the atmosphere inside the stadium be better than v City? I don’t know, but let’s try! I know they will be perfect."

Roma boss Eusebio Di Francesco: “I don’t need them [the team] to tell me [about Mo Salah]. His qualities are very clear. Don’t forget that I prepared games against him in Italy, too. But the fact lots of our players know him well, that can be an advantage.”

Bayern boss Jupp Heynckes: "The most important thing now is the psychology; it is vital that everyone is focused on the Madrid game. We need to just think about this. We are used to playing games every three days. What is most important is that the players want to play and that they are ready."

Real boss Zinedine Zidane: “We're in a semi-final and we'll give it everything we've got to defend our title. We're not going to mix anything up, we'll continue with what we're doing. We can think there will be other players as well as Cristiano who could make the difference in Munich. We have to stay focused because it's a Champions League semi-final and we're defending our title.”

The players

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson: "They'll ask different questions than City, but a lot of sides have asked questions of us in the Champions League this season and we've answered them so far. It's a huge moment. Two huge games, and hopefully it's the start of something special and the first of many special games at Liverpool over the next few years."

Roma defender Aleksandr Kolarov: "The competition is exciting but also more difficult than ever. As we’ve made it this far, we have to try to go on and win the Champions League. We have the duty to give it a go.”

Bayern defender Jerome Boateng: "We can only stop Cristiano Ronaldo as a team. In front of goal, he's like a machine. You can't shut him out completely, he always gets his chances in a game because of the lines he runs and his excellent timing. Real base their game around him and it's important we give him as little room as possible."

Real defender Raphael Varane: “We're playing in front of our fans and we always want to give a good account of ourselves because the season isn't over and we're going to fight to the end as ever. The attitude was good and I hope it continues in the same vein. It'll be a different game in the Champions League. It's a different competition, it's special. Cristiano is an absolutely vital player and we're thrilled to have him playing at this level at this stage of the season.”

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Follow the match

You can follow both matches on Eurosport:

Both matches will be live on BT Sport 2 from 7pm BST in the UK.

The odds

To reach the final:

Liverpool: 4/9
Real Madrid: 5/6
Bayern Munich Evens
Roma: 9/5

Tournament winners:

Real Madrid: 2/1
Bayern Munich: 21/10
Liverpool: 9/4
Roma: 9/1