Liverpool enjoyed a perfect start to the 2018-19 Premier League campaign with a comprehensive 4-0 victory over West Ham on Sunday night.
Mohamed Salah got his season running in just 19 minutes, prodding the ball home from inside the six-yard box after some beautiful build-up play saw Andrew Robertson slide the ball across to the Egyptian.
That lead was doubled in the dying seconds of the opening stanza, with Sadio Mane having the similar task of passing into an empty net after James Milner had chased down Robertson’s wayward cross.
Mane bagged his second in controversial circumstances not long after the restart, when he should have been flagged offside as he swiveled and shot into the bottom corner.
Daniel Sturridge scored a fourth for the Reds with his first touch off the bench, sneaking in at the back post to send home a corner after being on the pitch for all of 20 seconds.
Reds pick up from where they left off
Just under three months ago, Liverpool were at Anfield terrorising Brighton on their way to a 4-0 victory, and the offseason has seemingly done nothing to slow them down.
From kick off they were getting at the West Ham defence with balls into the box, using their scintillating pace and dynamic link-up play to great effect.
Their own defence held firm, with Joe Gomez partnering Virgil van Dijk after playing most of last season at right-back – showing class and solidity in what is considered to be his natural position.
Without captain Jordan Henderson and new signing Fabinho in midfield from the start, the trio of James Milner, Georginio Wijnaldum and Naby Keita controlled the centre of the pitch, dictated the tempo of the play and were adept at holding possession when needed, but were also spraying balls into the front men where possible.
New boy Keita in particular showed his class, instantaneously striking up a partnership with his teammates, and was instrumental in the creation of the first goal – taking to the No.8 shirt with aplomb.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have begun as they mean to in search of Manchester City’s Premier League crown, and while any overexcitement should be avoided just one game in, they will be a force when playing in this sort of form.
A painless debut for Alisson
With every touch and every involvement coming under intense scrutiny due to the hefty fee the Reds parted with to lure him to Anfield, Alisson was barely called upon between the sticks and enjoyed a comfortable debut.
A couple of saves straight into his body were about the extent of what he had to deal with, but it can already be seen that his distribution is world class, something that will greatly benefit Klopp and his fast-paced and attacking style of play.
A clean sheet in front of his new fans will do the Brazilian a world of good as he looks to settle into the club as quickly as possible, with a great deal of thanks going to his new teammates for making it all too easy.
Tougher tests will come for the 25-year-old, but early signs suggest that he will be more than ready for whatever comes his way.