Sterling steps up to the mark in old boy friendly

Liverpool 3-1 Bayer Leverkusen

Sami Hyypia returned to Anfield yesterday sitting in the managers chair for Bayer Leverkusen as the reds signed off on their pre-season campaign.

Raheem Sterling scores against Bayer Leverkusen

Admittedly Liverpool's pre-season has been tinged with competitive football, the 4-0 victory in the Europa League qualifier's two legs over Gomel, but this was the reds first pre-season win in a friendly.

As much as the crowd were there to see arguably Liverpool's greatest centre-back in recent years, they will have left with positivity surrounding the future in the form of the diminutive Raheem Sterling.

The 17 year old may not have the most physical presence in what could be a combative Premier League, but his pace, skill, trickery and eye for goal may make up for it.

And is he won't be giving Rodgers a headache, in stepped Andy Carroll too to smash a left footed strike home in front of the Kop.

Joe Allen was denied a run out for Liverpool by an overbearing Swansea City but the reds opened with a strong side.

Early doors and a perfect ball from Enrique found Sterling, who then moved past Schwabb and Wollscheid before curling an exquisite shot in to the net. 1-0 to the reds.

Comedy defending led to Liverpool's second and after Luis Suarez' initial good work - the ball could not fall to a more popular figure than Lucas Leiva to delicately stroke home the tap in.

Second half and a glut of changes - Adam, Carroll, Henderson, Spearing and Robinson came on - or as one cynical soul on twitter called it - 'here comes the players playing their last game for Liverpool'.

But Andy Carroll, who rejected a move to West Ham earlier this month, wanted to give Rodgers a taste of what he could deliver.  Although isolated up front for long periods, he was involved in a couple of good attacking moves before a backheel from Charlie Adam fell his way.

He pulled the trigger and unleashed a shot too powerful for the Bayer keeper.

Leverkusen scored a consolation goal - a minor blot on the Liverpool landscape - with a 25 yard hit from Sam.

At full time more chants for Sami as the player acknowledged his former home.

The phoney pre-season war is over.  The reds must be ready to fire on all cylinders as the Premier League commences this weekend.

    One comment on
    Sterling steps up to the mark in old boy friendly

    1. Great to see Sami back at Anfield. Wishing him all the best for his season in charge.

      And what about Raheem? Surely he has to be in the reds 18 man squad a lot more this season?

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