Liverpool v Paris Saint-Germain Tuesday, 20:00 Live on BT Sport 2
Reds already up to speed
We go again. Four months on from their final defeat to Real Madrid in Kiev, Liverpool get another Champions League campaign underway. And if you believe, as many managers do, that playing a big game is the best way to get disappointment out of your system, you'd have to say that the fixture computer has been kind. This, after all, is the tie of gameweek one by some distance.
The omens so far this season are good for Jürgen Klopp's side, who have made a faultless start in the Premier League. They were especially impressive away to Tottenham at the weekend, dominating far more than the 2-1 scoreline might suggest, with the players clearly now fully attuned to their manager's energetic approach.
There's a slight chance Roberto Firmino could miss out here after being poked in the eye (accidentally) by Jan Vertonghen, but otherwise the XI should be the same as the one that has started in all the league games so far. Liverpool play Southampton at home after this, and that will be a perfect opportunity to rotate if there are any tired legs this early in the campaign.
Back to the well for PSG
If Liverpool are trying to work off some relatively short-term frustration, their opponents are having another tilt at what is becoming an elusive prize. Paris Saint-Germain have been targeting the Champions League for some time now, but have yet to progress past the quarter-finals since their Ligue 1 dominance began.
The last couple of failures have been especially galling: they chucked away a massive lead against Barcelona in the second round in 2015/16, then exited at the hands of Real Madrid at the same stage last year. The message could hardly have been more explicit: the nouveau super-riche could not yet compete with the traditional powers.
They might have a better chance this term, though, with Kylian Mbappé every more influential, Gigi Buffon bringing all his experience, and Neymar thriving in a central role. PSG have also made a strong start to the season (five wins in five), and you imagine Thomas Tuchel will be highly motivated to get one over on his mentor here.
Anfield factor favours Liverpool
Liverpool were excellent at home in the Champions League last term, winning five of seven games (including play-off round) and growing in confidence as Anfield became a fortress. Manchester City and Roma were kneecapped in thrilling fashion, and if Klopp's men can reproduce that kind of performance, there will be plenty more victims this term.
There's still a sense that Liverpool can improve on their displays so far this season - not least because Mohamed Salah has only smouldered rather than exploded. This could be the perfect occasion for him to come to the party, with PSG far from impregnable at the back: Guingamp, Angers and Nîmes have all scored against them in Ligue 1.
PSG are a good side, especially on the front foot. But they tend to do their best work at home, particularly against elite sides: their away record this decade to Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich, for instance, is an underwhelming P7 W0 D1 L6. With that in mind, we like the chances of Liverpool shading an exciting game at 2.34.
Goals likely to flow
Every one of PSG's games so far this season has gone over the 2.5-goal mark. 15 of their 16 Champions League matches over the last two seasons have gone the same way, at an average of 4.19 per game.
Liverpool's Champions League matches last season, including the play-off round, produced an average of 4.4 goals per game.
Those are compelling figures, and while Liverpool's recent defensive improvementmakes us wary of going overboard with predictions for goals on Tuesday night, it still seems unlikely that this will go low. If you like Liverpool to win, then, it might be worth throwing in overs, for Dolly Parton's favourite odds of 9/5.
Kylian in the name of
Kylian Mbappé has scored four goals in three Ligue 1 games this term, and netted for France against the Netherlands during the international break. He had the weekend off and looks the value goalscorer pick at 7/5.
Same Game Multi
Betfair's new Same Game Multi tool lets you combine multiple picks on the same game. Here, you could back Liverpool double chance, an Mbappé goal and both teams to score in the first half at odds of [10.91], for instance.