Liverpool set their stall out with a 4-1 win over Norwich in Friday’s Premier League opener but the victory came at a cost.
Having narrowly missed out on the title to Manchester City last season, Jurgen Klopp’s men are determined to go one better this time around and hit the ground running at Anfield against the newly-promoted Canaries.
The Reds were 4-0 up before half-time with a Grant Hanley own goal, followed by strikes from Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk and Divock Origi doing the damage.
The European champions passed up several good chances to add to their lead after the break with Teemu Pukki’s 64th-minute effort the only goal of the second half.
Klopp was pleased with the first hour of his team’s performance but admits there was plenty of room for improvement for the 7/2 shots for Premier League glory.
“We were really sharp from the first whistle, we did what we wanted to do, we scored goals,” Klopp told Sky Sports. “There’s a lot of space for improvement but a lot of things were there today as well.
“We should have controlled the game more and kept the ball. It is normal when you’re not physically at your highest level and you lose a bit of your concentration.”
However, a calf injury to goalkeeper Alisson took the gloss off the evening for Liverpool, the Brazilian having to be helped from the field midway through the first half.
Klopp would not disclose the severity of the problem but says the 26-year-old will be missing for Wednesday’s Uefa Super Cup game against Chelsea on Wednesday.
It means summer signing Adrian will get the start in Istanbul and Klopp is happy to have an experienced deputy to call upon in Alisson’s absence.
The German added: “Adrian was completely relaxed and did what he had to do. He’s a good keeper, calm on the ball and a good shot stopper. That’s why we signed him.”
Meanwhile, Norwich boss Daniel Farke described his team as “greedy” following the heavy loss, claiming they had been too attack-minded as they chased a famous win at Anfield.
The Canaries are 5/6 to be relegated this season and Farke admits the season-opener had been a harsh lesson for his team.
“I want us to be brave and go out and play like it’s playing football with mates,” said Farke. “Of course, we have to be a bit more solid and concentrated in defence, but we have injured players coming back and it’s a few lessons to the lads on the pitch to learn as small details at this level can make a big difference.”