A few hours earlier, it was reported that want away striker, Luis Suarez has apologised to his teammates for his recent actions.
The Uruguay international is keen on securing a move away from Anfield and for the past two months, his decision to go public about this affair, has dominated and overshadowed other affairs at the club.
However, it now appears that the dust is settling down. Brendan Rodgers, who has maintained a tough stance throughout this whole soap opera, would certainly be glad to know that his star player has realised how his words have hurt his teammates and the club. Now, it is time for the team to turn their attention towards the new campaign. In the first game, Liverpool take on Stoke City who under their new manager Mark Hughes, would be eying a better future at the Britannia Stadium.
While Luis Suarez’s inclination to kick up a fuss has dominated newspapers all over the country, it is time for everyone to turn their attentions back towards the club and how far it has come. Although the Reds failed to secure a place in European football last season, the way the side ended the last season clearly gives hope to the fans of a better future.
The likes of Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge, who arrived at Anfield in January, have already shown their potential and the club’s latest acquisitions also have the potential to help the club achieve bigger things this time around. Experienced defender Kolo Toure will add more depth to the defence while Iago Aspas will add more creativity and firepower in attack. At the age of 20, Luis Alberto is still inexperienced but will be given sufficient chances to impress.
With a change of hands, Stoke City might not be going for a gung-ho approach towards the game. Mark Hughes’ sides have always been more inclined towards an expansive brand of football which means that the Potters may take some time to adapt to a new approach.
In the past 20 years or so, Liverpool have never really made flying starts to new campaigns. Last season, Liverpool lost 3-0 to West Brom at the Hawthorns in the first game of the campaign and it took Brendan Rodgers six games to finally secure his first win as the club’s manager.
After having a bite of Branislav Ivanovic last season, Luis Suarez was slapped with a 10-game ban which means that he still has five more games to go before he makes a return. Apart from that, Rodgers has a fully fit squad to choose from.
Watch Liverpool vs Stoke live on Saturday, August 17, 2013:
Fans in other part of the world can catch the action live on their local channels. Those in the Middle East can watch the match live on Al Jazeera Sport HD1. Whereas viewers in South East Asia can watch the match live on Star Sports. Meanwhile, you can also follow Liverpool vs Stoke with live scores on LiveSoccerTV's homepage.
Probable starting XI
Liverpool: Mignolet; Johnson, Agger, Touré, Enrique; Allen, Gerrard, Lucas; Aspas, Sturridge, Coutinho.
Stoke City: Begovic; Cameron, Shawcross, Huth, Pieters; Walters, Whelan, N'Zonzi, Etherington; Adam; Crouch.