Tranmere 0-6 Liverpool: European champions hit Tranmere for six in pre-season opener
Rhian Brewster (2), Nathaniel Clyne, Curtis Jones, Divock Origi and Bobby Duncan net for Liverpool
By Gerard Brand
Last Updated: 12/07/19 1:32pm
Liverpool started pre-season in fine fashion as they beat Tranmere 6-0 at Prenton Park on Thursday night.
Liverpool dominated the first half and were 3-0 up at half time thanks to Nathaniel Clyne's fine early strike (6), followed by a quick double by the impressive Rhian Brewster (38 and 45), his first senior goals for the club.
Jurgen Klopp changed his entire side for the second half and continued to control the game as goals from Curtis Jones (53), Divock Origi (60) and Bobby Duncan (67) flattened Tranmere.
Liverpool now go to Bradford on Sunday, before their US tour starts against Dortmund on July 19.
Liverpool's first-half team
Mignolet, Clyne, Phillips, Gomez, Larouci, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Milner, Lallana, Kent, Wilson, Brewster
Liverpool's second-half team
Jaros, Atherton, Hoever, Matip, Jonston, Lewis, Fabinho, Jones, Woodburn, Duncan, Glatzel, Origi
How Liverpool's youngsters impressed
In their first appearance since becoming European champions, Liverpool thoroughly dominated against Merseyside neighbours Tranmere, who have enjoyed back-to-back promotions to reach League One.
Clyne thrashed a fine shot into the top right corner from the right of the box after Brewster found him with a square pass, before the impressive French full-back Yasser Larouci forced Scott Davies into a fingertip save.
Larouci then forced Davies into another save with an effort across goal, and it was soon 2-0 as Brewster headed into the top left corner from Harry Wilson's cross on the stretch from the right.
Brewster finished the half on a high, finishing off after James Milner's 20-yard effort had been parried into his path by Davies, and the goals kept coming after the break.
Jones, 18, finished off well at the far post from Ben Woodburn's superb right-wing ball, and it was five minutes later as Origi, fresh from signing a new deal, took down a long Joel Matip ball and calmly slotted past Davies.
Duncan, the 18-year-old cousin of Reds legend Steven Gerrard, completed the scoring midway through the second half, finding the bottom-right corner after good work from Ki-Jana Hoever on the right, before Origi was denied a second by Davies at his feet.
There was one slight negative for Liverpool as German youngster Paul Glatzel went off with a knee injury, forcing goalkeeper Dan Atherton, the only remaining sub, to play outfield.
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Analysis: Brewster stands out, but others impress
Sky Sports News reporter Vinny O'Connor had a keen eye on Liverpool's youngsters at Prenton Park, and says Brewster's all-round performance impressed, not just because the goals...
Rhian Brewster: "It wasn't just about the two goals, it was his all-round play. The two goals showed his awareness, but there are parts to his game which you probably won't have heard so much.
"He's always coming deep, holding up, and he's also quick to react. He senses if will create a mistake, following it up by putting pressure on defenders. He really stood out in that respect. He didn't shy away from the physical battle either, against two physical centre-halves.
"He also set up Clyne for the opener with a lovely ball. Overall he was spot on, and it's looking already like he'll get more chances this season."
Best of the rest: "Yasser Larouci was brilliant in the first half; if he wants to put pressure on those ahead of him, his final ball must be better, but he was always composed on ball, willing to join in and had a few opportunities bursting into the box. He had a bit about him, with a decent enough touch, and though he wasn't tested too much defensively, he was strong in the tackle.
"Harry Wilson and Ryan Kent showed flashes in the first half, and Ben Woodburn's ball for Curtis Jones' goal was brilliant.
"And finally there's Ki-Jana Hoever. He caused a big problem in the second half, helping set up Bobby Duncan for his goal. I hear a lot coming out of academy about him, and he can play various positions, including right-back, centre-back and No 6 at times."
Klopp: It won't be our biggest window
Jurgen Klopp predicts Liverpool won't have a busy transfer window, saying the likes of Rhian Brewster and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are like "new signings".
Asked whether Liverpool would be active in the summer window, Klopp said: "We brought them already. Oxlade-Chamberlain, Rhian Brewster, they didn't play last year. All the young boys today, they're all new players for us.
"We will see what we do, but I don't think it will be the biggest transfer window of all time."
Liverpool's remaining pre-season fixtures...
- July 14: Bradford - Valley Parade
- July 19: Borussia Dortmund - Notre Dame Stadium, Indiana
- July 21: Sevilla - Fenway Park, Boston
- July 24: Sporting Lisbon - Yankee Stadium, New York
- July 28: Napoli - Murrayfield
- July 31: Lyon - Stade de Geneve, Switzerland