Liverpool to battle Hoffenheim for UEFA Champions League spot

Jurgen Klopp will find out who Liverpool face this Friday

Celtic - who overcome Rosenborg to make final stage of qualifying - face familiar opponents as they come up against Kazah side Astana, the side they beat at the some point last season when they won 3-2 on aggregate.

The first leg will take place in Germany on Tuesday, August 15 with the return leg at Anfield on Wednesday, August 23.

Hoffenheim were unbeaten at home throughout last season, registering 11 wins and six draws in 17 outings on their own patch.

Former Liverpool striker Owen has backed Jurgen Klopp's side to get the better of Hoffenheim over two legs and book their place in the group stage of the Champions League this season.

Jürgen Klopp's side will be favourites against Hoffenheim, but they will be tested by a team who survived relegation under Julian Nagelsmann before pulling off a surprise top-four finish.

"They're definitely not jumping for joy in Liverpool due to the draw".

Should Liverpool go through, it is thought that they would be seeded in pot three for the group stage draw.

- David McCarthy (@Mackey210) August 4, 2017Damn. just woke up and find out we play Hoffenheim. "They have a lot of really good young players", he continued. They lost two of them - [Sebastian] Rudy and [Niklas] Sule to Bayern Munich - and had a little change.

"We write messages to each other from time to time", said Nagelsmann.

"Jurgen Klopp is back in Germany".

Elsewhere, ties of note include Italian Serie A side Napoli taking on French side Nice, while Swiss outfit Young Boys lock horns with Russian club CSKA Moscow. The ex-Roma man has impressed this preseason, so much that star winger Sadio Mane has said he's willing to switch positions to accommodate the Egypt global.

Brendan Rodgers' side faced the Kazakhstani team in the third qualifying round previous year, running out 3-2 aggregate winners. It's a great challenge, but we are just delighted to take part in it.

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