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Half-Time Report: Liverpool on the brink of Champions League elimination

Liverpool are on the brink of the Europa League as they trail against Basel.

Liverpool have just 45 minutes to rescue their Champions League campaign as they head into half time trailing 1-0 to Basel in a must-win match.

The Reds controlled the opening stages but a defensive lapse almost cost them dearly in the 13th minute as Martin Skrtel gifted possession to Luca Zuffi, who picked out Shkelzen Gashi in the danger zone.

Mohamed Elneny of FC Basel and Joe Allen of Liverpool compete for a header during the UEFA Champions League group B match on December 9, 2014© Getty Images

The Albanian international let fly from the edge of the penalty area, but failed to trouble Simon Mignolet between the home sticks, missing the target by some distance.

Basel took the lead in the 25th minute through Fabian Frei, who exchanged passes with Zuffi before drilling a low shot into the bottom corner in front of a stunned Kop to give the Reds a mountain to climb.

Liverpool were poor throughout the first period, much to the frustration of the expectant home support, and were fortunate that the deficit was just one come the break.

Dejected Liverpool players Rickie Lambert and Steven Gerrard look on after conceding the opening goal during the UEFA Champions League group B match against Basel on December 9, 2014© Getty Images

The Swiss outfit almost had a second in the 39th minute when Dejan Lovren produced a vital block to prevent a strike from Frei finding its way into the bottom corner.

Basel did have the ball in the net again moments before half time, but Gashi's strike was ruled out for offside.

Nothing short of a win will do for Liverpool, but Basel are looking the more likely to come away with three points and a place in the last 16 of the competition.

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Mohamed Elneny of FC Basel and Joe Allen of Liverpool compete for a header during the UEFA Champions League group B match on December 9, 2014
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