MX23RW : Friday, December 4 05:00:13| >> :600:201490:201490:
Oct 23, 2019 at 8pm UK at Red Bull Arena
Attendance: 29,520
SalzburgRed Bull Salzburg
Braut Haaland (40' pen., 72')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Mertens (17', 64'), Insigne (73')

Preview: Red Bull Salzburg vs. Napoli - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the Champions League clash between Red Bull Salzburg and Napoli, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Red Bull Salzburg have provided a good account of themselves so far in the Champions League, scoring a whopping nine goals in their first two Group E games of the season.

They play host to a Napoli side that top the group after a surprising 2-0 win over title holders Liverpool in their first European fixture of the season.

Match Preview

Erling Braut Haaland celebrates scoring for Salzburg on October 2, 2019© Reuters

Salzburg have been in sizzling form in front of goal, putting six past Genk in their first Champions League match of the campaign, before netting three times in a 4-3 defeat to Liverpool.

Teen striking Erling Braut Haaland has netted four of those nine strikes, with three coming in a maiden Champions League hat-trick against Genk, while fellow young forward Hwang Hee-chan has also caught the eye with two goals and three assists.

Salzburg sit at the top of the Austrian Bundesliga and have hit a staggering 47 goals in just 11 games - 19 more than the next highest scorers in the division.

However, Jesse Marsch's side did actually draw their last league game 1-1 against Sturm Graz, their second league draw of an unbeaten domestic season thus far.

It makes for grim reading for Napoli as they travel to Austria, having dropped points in a goalless draw against Genk after their impressive 2-0 win over Liverpool in the first game.

Napoli, who have come to be identified with free-flowing, attacking football from their time under Maurizio Sarri, have struggled a little in front of goal lately under Carlo Ancelotti, drawing blanks in three of their last five games across all competitions.

The Serie A side have dropped away from Juventus domestically after running the Bianconeri so close in the 2017/18 season, finishing a distant second last term and are currently fourth, six points off the pace.

Instead, Antonio Conte's Inter Milan have taken the mantle of title challengers, just one point behind the league leaders having been top for much of the start of the campaign.

Napoli remain top of the Champions League group, however, and will hope to grab another important win as they push for top spot and a theoretically easier draw in the first knockout stage.

Salzburg form: DWWLWD
Napoli form: WLWDDW

Team News

Napoli's Dries Mertens celebrates scoring their first goal with team mates on September 17, 2019© Reuters

Salzburg head coach Marsch is without veteran goalkeeper Alexander Walke due to a fractured foot, but still has cover for first-choice stopper Cican Stankovic.

Central midfielder Antoine Bernede has also suffered a fractured tibia and remains sidelined, while youngsters Jasper van der Werff and Mohamed Camara have not been included in the Champions League squad.

Ancelotti is without a number of defenders due to injury, with centre-back Nikola Maksimovic and left-back Mario Rui both suffering from muscle problems.

Right-back Elseid Hysaj is also out after a fractured sternum suffered when falling on his head while challenging for an aerial ball, while forward Hirving Lozano is a doubt with an ankle problem.

Defender Lorenzo Tonelli and wingers Leandrinho and Amato Ciciretti have also been omitted from the Serie A side's Champions League squad and are not available for selection.

Salzburg possible starting lineup:
Stankovic, Nissen, Onguene, Wober, Ulmer; Takumi, Mwepi, Junuzovic, Szoboszlai; Haaland, Hwang

Napoli possible starting lineup:
Meret; Di Lorenzo, Manolas, Koulibaly, Ghoulam; Callejon, Allan, Fabian, Insigne; Milik, Mertens

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We say: Salzburg 3-3 Napoli

Salzburg can't seem to help themselves but score, but they are also susceptible defensively and, given the quality of Napoli's forwards, it could lead to an entertaining, high-scoring draw.


Who will win Wednesday's Champions League clash between Red Bull Salzburg and Napoli?

Red Bull Salzburg
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