It’s hard to say whether they’re closing out the season in style or kicking the pre-season in to high gear, but a emphatic win over Sydney FC gave 70,000 Australian Liverpool supporters another reason to party as the Reds fielded a unique side that featured the likes of Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher, Daniel Agger and Steve McManaman alongside the current crop of first team regulars.
It’s been less than a week since Liverpool sealed a berth in next season’s Champions League with a decisive victory over Middlesbrough FC at Anfield and their return to Europe helped fuel the party atmosphere down under. The last time the Reds visited Australia they treated us to a stirring rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone and they didn’t disappoint on the follow-up — and the club responded in kind as goals from Daniel Sturridge, Alberto Moreno and Roberto Firmino gave the people what they want.
“It was the most intense football trip for an away game I ever had!” said Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, only half-joking. “I had no idea how the players would do it but then I was surprised that obviously they enjoyed the game,” continued the German manager. “I didn’t say a lot before the game to be honest but two things [I did say] were that it would be cool if we could show character and that we love football. I saw the boys showed both and looked really well – the goals were really difficult to defend, it was brilliant,” explained Klopp, before adding, “I enjoyed it, that’s also important.”
An ongoing foot injury kept club captain Jordan Henderson back on Merseyside while both Emre Can and Philippe Coutinho missed out due to upcoming international commitments, but the addition of club legends meant that the crowd in the ANZ Stadium got to see something special as Gerrard, Carragher, Agger and McManaman rolled back the years to put in a shift for Klopp’s new look Reds. It was a one off prestige friendly, but it’s a memory they won’t soon forget!