Klopp has great expectations Liverpool will deliver

13 August, 2018, 08:22 | Author: Miranda Cannon
  • Action Images via Reuters  Carl Recine

Liverpool will be hoping to get their new Premier League campaign off to a flying start, when they take on West Ham United at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.

Liverpool underlined their Premier League title credentials with a comprehensive 4-0 defeat of West Ham at Anfield.

Manager Jurgen Klopp, however, continues to perceive his side as an underdog in the battle to unseat Man City, likening their challenge to Rocky Balboa attempting to topple Ivan Drago.

"We played as good as possible today and we extended a really good pre-season into the Premier League", Klopp told the BBC. Manuel Pellegrini could not have asked for a more hard opening game as he took charge of the London side in his first game as their manager.

Liverpool eased to victory with Sadio Mane scoring twice between efforts from Mohamed Salah and substitute Daniel Sturridge.

Mane, who has now scored in each of his last three Premier League openers, and Salah, the league's Golden Boot victor last season with 32 goals, sealed Liverpool's victory in their first competitive game since they lost the Champions League final to Real Madrid in March.

West Ham offered little as the hosts dominated, but Klopp was reluctant to decribe the performance as flawless. Fabianski was by far the busier 'keeper with Alisson making just one comfortable save and impressing far more with his feet to launch a series of Liverpool attacks.

West Ham manager Manuel Pellergini responded by introducing former Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez after the hour mark.

A very good start, for sure.

Poor defending cost the London side a second goal just before the interval, to Sadio Mane, who added a third after 53 minutes from an offside position. "I think he might do well".

The Reds begin their season with a tricky tie against a Hammers side that were unbeaten during pre-season. "Let's go for it until we have no more air or oxygen, really go for it". So why should we [be the only challengers] because we made a few signings?

"The champions Manchester City did not lose any players and brought in (Riyad) Mahrez, so it doesn't make them weaker".

"I think that Liverpool deserved to win".

Crucially, however, Liverpool looked nearly as comfortable in every aspect of the field, their midfield dominating with the energetic and aggressive Naby Keita impressing on his debut. Managing any other team in the Premier League must be pretty demoralising at the moment, particularly when you consider this wasn't just false modesty from Guardiola: City brushed Arsenal aside without David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne. And did they need another centre-forward in case Firmino is out? That's the only thing we expect from ourselves.


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