Liverpool vs West Ham, Premier League 2018-19

Liverpool's Sadio Mane celebrates with Roberto Firmino and Naby Keita after scoring their third goal against West Ham. Reuters
Liverpool's Sadio Mane celebrates with Roberto Firmino and Naby Keita after scoring their third goal against West Ham. Reuters

13 August, 2018

The Reds underlined their Premier League title credentials with a comprehensive 4-0 defeat of West Ham in their first game at Anfield.

New goalkeeper Alisson Becker is a serious and vital upgrade, Fabinho and Naby Keita have beefed up the midfield and Xherdan Shaqiri is an exciting wildcard, who could look ludicrously cheap. You see things in pre-season, but it's different.

A once-great prospect whose last hurrah came in the late 1980s making a comeback against the latter-day heroes is a more accurate reflection of where Liverpool now sits.

West Ham finished 13th previous year but the general consensus from what we've seen is that most West Ham fans feel they could've done better. They are used to the style of play, sometimes it needs a bit of time, I have no problem with that. The pressure is cranked up now - Liverpool fans will want a trophy in order to secure more than just bragging rights. "It's brilliant. Sturridge had a fantastic pre-season, the best since I've been here, and it gives us unbelievable new options".

"We have to invest more, we have to fight more, we have to create more".

The Reds had a busy schedule over pre-season, with friendly matches against Chester, Tranmere, Bury, Blackburn, Borussia Dortmund, Manchester City, Manchester United, Napoli and Torino all contested.

Liverpool should and quite simply have to make a fast start against West Ham.

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Now goalkeeping coach at West Ham United, Valero was part of Rafael Benitez's coaching set up between 2007 to 2010, working with Pepe Reina at the height of his Liverpool career.

Salah opened the scoring in the 19th minute after summer addition Naby Keita ran up the middle and passed to Andy Robertson on the left, drawing the West Ham defence away from the box. He was not talking about financial investment, though West Ham had illustrated that spending is not the cure to all ills.

"The plan is that we really go for it (the Premier League)". We can not be anything different than the challenge because we didn't win anything for a long time. You would have thought they were joking.

"So, we need to be a competitive team on Sunday and after that next week, so I hope that all the players who have been working for around one month, except from those who arrived late, can be ready to start to be a competitive team".

West Ham offered little as the hosts dominated, but Klopp was reluctant to decribe the performance as ideal.

"I'm sure we'll still have a pretty fantastic football team on the pitch, but I'll have to make a few decisions". I think Alisson is one of them.

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