Jurgen Klopp was delighted by confirmation of a new long-term contract for Diogo Jota at Liverpool, where the forward now plans to play his prime years.

Liverpool announced Jota's extension on Tuesday, with his new deal reportedly set to expire in 2027.

After Mohamed Salah similarly agreed fresh terms and Darwin Nunez was bought from Benfica, Liverpool head into the new Premier League season with a strong attacking line-up despite the departure of Sadio Mane.

Only Salah (60) and Mane (39) have scored more goals for Liverpool than Jota (34) since he joined the club in 2020, with the same two players also leading the way in goal involvements (82 for Salah, 49 for Mane, 41 for Jota).

Averaging a goal every 157 minutes in all competitions, Jota outperformed Mane (192 mins) over this period, while his shot conversion rate of 17.7 per cent marginally betters Salah's 17.5 per cent.

However, these are not the only qualities of value to Klopp, who told Liverpool's official website: "[It is] brilliant, brilliant news, I would say.

"His qualities are obvious. He scores goals – not a bad quality – he works unbelievably hard for the team, his pressing and counter-pressing are on an unbelievable level, he can play in all of our attacking roles, and he has an incredible attitude. Not a bad package, not bad at all.

"As a striker who can play on the wing, he gives us so many options, and since he came to Liverpool, he has improved so much.

"I have said before that Diogo is the player we hoped he would be but also a little bit better, so long may this continue."

Jota, who signed from Wolves, also thought he would be a good fit for the high-energy team and has since averaged 3.9 recoveries per 90 – exactly in line with Roberto Firmino, the man he has largely replaced, over the same period.

But Jota believes he is still yet to peak, having netted 21 goals last season after 13 the year before.

"[I'm] quite different [now], I have to say," he said. "I obviously played kind of a different role as well most of the time.

"It helped me grow as a player, obviously more mature now, more knowledge of the game. Everything is better, I have to say.

"We need to obviously keep improving, because I think I didn't reach my prime yet. Hopefully, during the duration of my stay here, I'll do that.

"I said in my very first interview that I thought I suited the style of Jurgen and the team. I think I proved that instantly.

"Now it's a question of developing our game, developing the intensity we play [with], because although we are doing brilliantly, there's always one more step, and that's the step we are trying to make every time."

Diogo Jota has become the latest Liverpool forward to sign a new long-term contract at Anfield.

The Reds headed into the close-season with their superstar front three of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino entering the final 12 months of their respective deals.

Salah agreed new terms, while Mane left for Bayern Munich. Firmino has made clear his desire to stay but is yet to put pen to paper.

Now, in the week before the start of the new Premier League season, Jota has ensured he will remain a key part of this Liverpool team.

The Portugal international signed from Wolves in September 2020 and quickly established himself ahead of Firmino in the pecking order, although Mane often played through the centre last season.

This term, Jota will have further competition in the form of new signing Darwin Nunez, but the 25-year-old – who has scored 34 goals in 85 games for Liverpool – is up for the fight.

Reportedly now under contract until 2027, Jota told Liverpool's official website: "Well, [I'm] really proud, I have to say.

"Obviously, since I arrived two years ago, I established myself as an important player in this team – that's what I wanted from the beginning.

"Now, signing a new long-term deal, it's obviously from the club's perspective proof of the belief in myself as a player. For me, obviously it's really good to establish I'll be here for a while.

"So, the beginning of a new season, let's do it."

In his time at Liverpool, only Salah (60 goals, 22 assists) and Mane (39 goals, 10 assists) have scored more goals or registered more goal involvements (41 for Jota) than the striker.

Jota has impressively averaged a goal every 157 minutes in all competitions. He ranks fourth among Liverpool players over this period in that regard, behind Nunez (31), who netted on his debut on Saturday, the departed Takumi Minamino (133) and Salah (135).

Timo Werner has only managed 23 goals in his first two seasons with Chelsea after joining from Leipzig in mid-2020.

The new Blues owners are open to allowing Werner, who signed on a five-year contract, to depart on loan.

The 26-year-old scored 95 goals in 159 appearances with Leipzig from 2016 to 2020.

TOP STORY – LEIPZIG LEAD RACE FOR CHELSEA'S WERNER

Leipzig are leading the race to sign Chelsea striker Werner ahead of Juventus, claims Fabrizio Romano.

The Bundesliga club met with Chelsea on Sunday, proposing a swap deal for Werner, who is Leipzig's main target.

Juventus and Newcastle United have also shown an interest in the Germany international. 

ROUND-UP

Barcelona are considering a move for Leipzig defender Angelino should they miss out on Chelsea full-back Marcos Alonso, claims Diario Sport.

Everton could make a move for forgotten Chelsea forward Michy Batshuayi, according to talkSPORT. The Toffees lost Richarlison to Tottenham last month and will turn to Batshuayi, who scored 14 goals on loan at Besiktas last season.

– Portuguese forward Diogo Jota is set to be rewarded for his strong second season at Anfield, with Liverpool to offer him a lucrative pay rise as part of a new deal, despite having three years to run on his contract, claims The Telegraph.

Napoli and Chelsea are in talks on a loan deal for Spanish goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, according to Sky Sports.

– Football Insider reports that Leicester City have informed Newcastle that midfielder James Maddison will cost them £60million as they circle for his signature.

– Leicester City are set to farewell goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel,  who is on the cusp of joining French Ligue 1 club Nice, reports the Mail.

Mohamed Salah was affected by his contract saga in the latter stages of last season, according to Liverpool team-mate Virgil van Dijk.

Egypt international Salah signed a new deal at Anfield last month worth a reported £350,000 a week, making him the highest-earning player in the club's history.

That brought an end to months of speculation regarding the 30-year-old's future, having himself hinted that he may move away as he entered the final year of his previous deal.

Despite Salah finishing last season as the Premier League's joint-top goalscorer alongside Son Heung-min, Van Dijk believes the contract standoff took its toll on the Egypt star.

"At the end of the season, from maybe April until the end, there was a lot of talk about his contract and stuff," Van Dijk told The Telegraph. 

"We're all human beings and maybe that affected him a little bit, unfortunately."

The 118 Premier League goals Salah has scored since his first Liverpool campaign in 2017-18 is 13 more than next-best Harry Kane.

Former Chelsea forward Salah scored 27 goals in his first 31 appearances for the Reds in all competitions last season, compared to four goals in his final 20 games.

He was on the scoresheet from the penalty spot in Saturday's Community Shield win over Manchester City, and Van Dijk has backed his colleague to continue scoring regularly.

"He still showed high levels and quality and he played with a free mind and obviously he's happy to be here and I think everyone is happy to be here," the Dutchman said.

"He showed it already for the last three years. He's under the microscope all the time. He created that himself. He's such a good player and shows that consistently all the time."

Liverpool will carry out checks on Curtis Jones after the midfielder missed the 3-0 friendly defeat to Strasbourg on Sunday due to a mystery injury.

A day on from Liverpool beating Manchester City 3-1 in the Community Shield, a largely second-string XI lined up at Anfield for the visit of Strasbourg.

Two goals from Adrien Thomasson and one from Habib Diallo condemned the hosts to a defeat in their last match before the Premier League season gets under way.

Klopp had planned on using Jones, who made just a fleeting appearance off the bench against City, but revealed the 21-year-old had a problem that would need further examination.

It remains to be seen whether Jones is fit to play any part when Liverpool launch their league campaign at Fulham on Saturday.

"Curtis, we have to see. [There] was no impact or whatever, so that always makes it a bit, 'My god, what could it be?'," Klopp said.

"We had no time; he felt it today and he wanted to play desperately, but then the medical department said no and that we needed to make further tests. We will do that tomorrow and then we will know more."

Klopp was also without midfielder Naby Keita, who was described by the manager as "ill", while centre-back Ibrahima Konate came off injured in the second half against the Ligue 1 visitors.

Addressing what was wrong with Konate, Klopp said, quoted on Liverpool's official website: "We don't know exactly yet on Ibou, but it doesn't look too concerning, so I hope we caught it in the right moment."

Roberto Firmino does not want to leave Liverpool, seemingly dispelling any suggestion he could join Juventus.

Serie A giants Juve had been linked with making a move for Firmino, who has just one year remaining on his deal at Anfield.

Previously a guaranteed starter for Jurgen Klopp, Firmino's place in Liverpool's starting XI is no longer assured, with Diogo Jota having excelled since his arrival from Wolves and Darwin Nunez signing from Benfica.

Sadio Mane also filled in centrally for much of last season, with Luis Diaz having taken up a place on the left, but the Senegal forward has now departed for Bayern Munich.

With Jota sidelined through injury, Firmino – who scored just five league goals last season – started in Liverpool's Community Shield clash with Manchester City on Saturday, which the Reds went on to win 3-1.

Afterwards, Firmino told TNT Brazil he has no intention of leaving Liverpool.

"I love this team, city and [the] fans," the 30-year-old said. "I'm here at Liverpool, and I want to stay, of course."

Firmino played 59 minutes against City at the King Power Stadium, having one shot and creating one chance. 

He was replaced by Nunez, who played a pivotal role in Liverpool's victory, winning a penalty that Mohamed Salah converted to put the Reds back in front after Julian Alvarez's equaliser, before scoring late in stoppage time.

Nunez became the fourth player under Klopp to net on his Liverpool debut – after Mane, Salah and Virgil van Dijk.

Klopp had previously emphasised Firmino's importance, saying on Thursday that the former Hoffenheim attacker was "the heart and soul of this team".

Virgil van Dijk told Darwin Nunez to get his "head down, work and be important" for Liverpool after the striker's decisive cameo performance against Manchester City.

Nunez came on with just under an hour played in Saturday's Community Shield clash between the Premier League champions and the FA Cup winners.

He made a telling impact, winning a penalty when his header struck the arm of Ruben Dias to enable Liverpool to restore their lead through Mohamed Salah after Julian Alvarez had cancelled out Trent Alexander-Arnold's opener.

Nunez, signed from Benfica for a fee of £64million (€75m), with a further £21.4m (€25m) in potential add-ons, capped off a 3-1 triumph for Jurgen Klopp's side with a header late in stoppage time.

The 23-year-old had been the target of criticism and social media jibes following some sloppy performances early in pre-season, though Nunez scored four in a 5-0 rout of RB Leipzig last week and slotted in seamlessly to Liverpool's attack at the King Power Stadium.

Van Dijk shrugged off the criticism of his new team-mate, who the defender explained is already an important player in Liverpool's squad following the departure of club great Sadio Mane to Bayern Munich.

"He's important. He's difficult to play against and hopefully he can show it for the rest of the season," Van Dijk told reporters.

"We all help him in some ways and make sure that he's comfortable, he's calm and just work, and don't focus on what the outside world has to say because everyone has to say something these days. So head down, work and be important for the club.

"I don't speak Spanish, so I'm not saying anything to him at the moment, but we have plenty of Spanish speakers in the team and I know for a fact that they help him, and I don't see anything that bothers him at the moment.

"But we will see, everyone has something to say because there are so platforms to do it. So it can hit you but it shouldn't. Just enjoy your game, enjoy the group, enjoy the club, because we are very blessed to be able to play for Liverpool."

It was a sentiment echoed by midfielder Fabinho, who himself took time to settle into the Premier League following a move from Monaco in 2018.

He said: "We saw he's getting better from the first game of the pre-season. He did really well for the team.

"We've had three weeks of training, so now he knows the way we play a little bit. We are learning the way he plays a little bit more.

"We know he is fast, he's strong and he's a proper number nine. He will be in the box, it looks like the ball follows him, he will always get the chance to score.

"So yeah, I think it's really important for him to score in the first official game in a Liverpool shirt. He will be very important for us this season."

Liverpool's victory marked their first Community Shield triumph under Klopp, at the third time of asking.

Including occasions when the trophy was shared, only Manchester United (21) have won the trophy more times than the Reds (16), whose performance delivered a message to rivals City ahead of the new campaign.

Van Dijk, though, knows using the Community Shield display to predict how Liverpool's season could go would be foolish.

"We can't look to the future," the centre-back added. "It's a boring answer but we knew that, for example, two years ago we had so many injuries, those are part of football as well.

"We are focussing game by game. Hopefully it will be a successful season, better than last season. We are excited to crack on, and we will see what the year brings."

Jurgen Klopp was hugely impressed with his back-up brigade after Liverpool beat Manchester City 3-1 in the Community Shield, as he hit out at the nature of judging players in pre-season.

Liverpool triumphed in a fiercely contested clash with the Premier League champions at the King Power Stadium on Saturday thanks to goals from Trent Alexander-Arnold, Mohamed Salah and Darwin Nunez.

The latter impressed with a 30-minute cameo from the bench, marking his debut in English football in style and outshining City's big-money striker – Erling Haaland – in the process.

Nunez stooped low to head in a left-wing cross in stoppage time to put Liverpool two goals ahead, shortly before Haaland inexplicably hit the crossbar at the other end after Adrian had kept out Phil Foden's shot.

Signed from Benfica after a brilliant 2021-22 campaign, both in Portugal's top tier and the Champions League, Nunez had some difficult opening matches for Liverpool at the start of pre-season, but he scored four in a 5-0 rout of RB Leipzig last week.

His impact from the bench on Saturday was telling, with the 23-year-old having four goal attempts, two of which were on target, and it was his header into the upright arm of Ruben Dias that handed Liverpool a penalty after Julian Alvarez had drawn City level.

"It was good, was really good," Klopp said of Nunez's debut in his post-match news conference.

"It's clear that he will get better with time. Everybody gets judged on first sight. It's not helpful for anybody, but it happens all the time.

"Both teams were today not 100 per cent at their physical usual situation. But in the first few [pre-season] games we were not even close to the level today. [In those games] everybody judges his first touches and this kind of thing and it's a joke, but we have to live with it. We are patient, we knew that he can do good stuff.

"We all know – [strikers are] a special species – and everyone knows about the positives, goal involvements. I think Darwin, even without scoring the third one, [would have scored] because of the penalty was from his header, and before that Ederson reacted brilliantly [to make a save when one-on-one with the Uruguayan].

"The goal was the icing on the cake. For him, you could see his face, how happy the boys are for him. It's a really good sign after a short period of time."

Nunez became the fourth player to score on his competitive debut for Liverpool under Klopp, after Sadio Mane, Salah and Virgil van Dijk, but the striker was not the only substitute to impress Liverpool's manager, who won the Community Shield for the first time at the third time of asking.

"Today I liked the impact, in a high-level game. As good as we were, the impact from the bench was really exceptional. A very good sign," said Klopp, who brought on Naby Keita, Curtis Jones, James Milner, Harvey Elliott and debutant Fabio Carvalho as well as Nunez.

"A good watch, a good game. Both teams used what was available today, that's what we could have expected."

Asked by Stats Perform if the nature in which Liverpool regained control in the latter stages boded well for the fitness of his side ahead of the 2022-23 campaign, Klopp said: "It was for me really nice. It's the most difficult opponent you can get, they do not get any better.

"Their squad, the boys he could bring on, it's very experienced, proven quality. We have space to improve the quality from the bench. Harvey's impact. Millie [Milner], I'm not sure what level he can reach this year to be honest! Curtis, and Naby – wow – just so good."

Liverpool face Strasbourg in a friendly on Sunday at Anfield, before turning their attention to taking on promoted Fulham in their first game of the Premier League season.

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has insisted he has no concerns about Erling Haaland after he was unable to strike a debut goal against Liverpool.

The Premier League champions fell to a 3-1 defeat against Jurgen Klopp's side at the King Power Stadium, with the Norwegian seeing both an effort disallowed and hitting the frame of the goal.

Plenty of expectation has been placed upon Haaland following his big-money move to English football and, with Liverpool's own expensive recruit Darwin Nunez starting on the bench, the stage was set for the forward to make an impact.

City's number nine was unable to do so, while Nunez came off the bench to win a penalty and score Liverpool's third, but Guardiola remained confident his new recruit will be firing in goals throughout the course of the campaign.

"He had chances, two or three in the first half, one at the end, fought a lot, made the movements," he told a news conference.

"Good for him to see the reality, a new country, new league. He was there. Today he didn't score, other days he will score.

"No [worries about the chances that he missed]. He has the quality. He has an incredible sense. We had just two weeks, the team was good in the States. I am really comfortable. The season starts now."

Haaland's big moment came in the latter stages of the match, where the former Borussia Dortmund man struck the crossbar from point-blank range but, while it will likely lead to jibes from rival fans, Guardiola downplayed the incident.

"He is strong, he missed it, another time he would put it in the net. What is the problem? It happened, it is football," he added.

"There was another goal disallowed because the ball was out of the line and he scored. He would do it. It's good to understand sometimes, he needs that situation to understand okay, this is what to do. It's good.

"I am not concerned or worried about that. He would be happy if we won, he scored goals, everyone would be, but the reality is it is a long 11 months.

"We have two, three months ahead of us before the World Cup, so intense, and then after that this season is every three days, four days, and Erling is going to score, I am sure of it."

Trent Alexander-Arnold suggested Darwin Nunez had enjoyed one of the strongest Liverpool debuts he has seen after the new Reds striker starred in a Community Shield success over Manchester City.

Nunez, the flagship purchase this close-season at Anfield, was forced to wait for his bow after he was named on the bench for Saturday's match at the King Power Stadium.

But after Alexander-Arnold had handed the Reds the lead with a deflected first-half effort, the forward appeared for an eventful final half-hour that saw him both win a penalty and net a goal in a lively performance.

Asked how good his new team-mate's performance was, the England right-back hailed Nunez's bow as one of the best at the club in recent memory.

"It's got to be up there," Alexander-Arnold told ITV Sport. "He won the pen, he scored the goal. He looks lively, very lively.

"He's someone who has been brought in to score goals, and he proved he could do that today. He's come in, got his head down, worked hard so far [and] come on today with a point to prove."

Alexander-Arnold was delighted he could similarly contribute to winning the Community Shield, the lone domestic honour previously missing from the club's cabinet under Jurgen Klopp.

"It was on target, that's all I'll say," he said of his goal. "I just tried to make a good connection, steer it towards goal. I'm always happy to contribute towards goals. It was an important one for us.

"This one means a lot, to be honest. I think it's the third time we've been here, and we haven't been able to win it so far. That was our motivation going into it.

"Our season started today. A lot of teams start next week, but ours started today, so it was important for us to get off on the right foot."

Double cup glory last term helped Liverpool go within a whisker of a quadruple, before City edged them on the final day of the Premier League season and they then fell to Real Madrid in the Champions League final.

"Who knows what will happen over the course of the season?" added Alexander-Arnold on Saturday.

"Our aim is to be as fit as possible to push them from the very first kick. This was the perfect start, and we hope to win trophies along the way."

Jurgen Klopp declared his Liverpool side are ready for the new season after their 3-1 victory over Manchester City in the Community Shield.

Trent Alexander-Arnold's opener was cancelled out by City debutant Julian Alvarez in the second half, but the Reds responded as Mohamed Salah converted a penalty before Darwin Nunez marked his debut with a goal.

Coming off the bench, Nunez made a key difference to Liverpool as they fought to prevent the tie from going to a penalty shoot-out. He showed that the early signs are promising in the club's bid to ease the loss of Sadio Mane to Bayern Munich.

The win means Klopp has won every trophy available to him in English football, having previously fallen short in the Community Shield, and he declared his side were primed to go again after a gruelling campaign last term.

"I liked the game a lot, but most of the time City games against us are cool to watch. We don't always win, but they are entertaining," Klopp told ITV.

"I was happy with our start of the game, but every sub made a difference. The boys are ready and it is good.

"We saw Darwin Nunez in dangerous situations. He used the spaces and finished well, too."

Liverpool played every fixture possible last season as they won the League Cup and FA Cup, while losing in the Champions League final to Real Madrid in Paris.

The addition of Nunez should improve Liverpool's attack, as they failed to score in any of their three finals last term, aside from in penalty shoot-outs.

Andy Robertson believes the former Benfica player, who has faced flak from some critics early in his Reds career, will be a valuable addition to the squad.

"Not bad, after all that's been said about him the last couple of weeks. We need to give him time, but he's shown so much quality already," said left-back Robertson.

"We've got so much quality in our squad and he's added to it, he'll be a good addition."

"They're not used to Erling's natural runs yet, like we're not used to Darwin's. They'll need some time for Erling, but that doesn't mean he can't score."

Jurgen Klopp's assessment of Erling Haaland and Manchester City on Friday could easily have gone against the Liverpool manager.

After all, add in a great goalscorer to an already great team and surely the result can only be more greatness? But in   Saturday's Community Shield game – taking place at Leicester City's King Power Stadium – Klopp's words rang true, and instead it was City's Julian Alvarez and Liverpool's Darwin Nunez who each made their mark.

Liverpool ran out the victors in this latest instalment of English football's new number one rivalry, as City lost the season's curtain-raiser for a second successive year. It was new signing Nunez – named as a substitute when Haaland had been given the nod from the off for the Reds' opponents – who added gloss in a 3-1 victory that makes it advantage Klopp in the rivalry stakes for the coming season.

It was easy to forget, due to the vociferous atmosphere emanating from both ends, that this match amounts to what is essentially an exhibition, even if Pep Guardiola has often cited the Community Shield as a major trophy – one that Klopp had not previously won.

The intensity in the stands was matched by the players, especially in one spell midway through the first half when the tenacious Bernardo Silva sparked a flurry of robust tackles in midfield.

Liverpool dominated the opening stages, enjoying 57 per cent possession in the first 15 minutes and going close through Mohamed Salah and Andy Robertson.

 

It has been an off-season of change for City. Kalvin Phillips and Alvarez have joined Haaland through the door, but Gabriel Jesus, Raheem Sterling and Oleksandr Zinchenko have left, and a lack of fluidity to the Premier League champions' play was noticeable as they laboured to get out of first gear.

There was a moment prior to Trent Alexander-Arnold's 21st-minute opener, when Kevin De Bruyne spun clear of his marker and Haaland looked all set to burst through and square up Liverpool's stand-in goalkeeper Adrian, yet the Belgian's pass was just too close to Virgil van Dijk.

That summed up a hugely frustrating first half for City's new number nine, who only had three touches prior to the half-hour mark, all of which came in his own half.

Alexander-Arnold's strike, his 10th Reds goal from outside the area, led to red smoke bombs being thrown onto the pitch from a jubilant Liverpool end, and City at that stage looked punch-drunk.

Then, the chances came. First, Haaland drilled at Adrian while off-balance, before he just failed to get proper purchase on a cross from the left – Riyad Mahrez heading into Adrian's arms on the rebound.

In normal pre-season circumstances, Guardiola might well have taken Haaland off when he made his first changes just before the hour, but it was instead Mahrez and Jack Grealish who made way for Alvarez and Phil Foden. At the same time, Klopp introduced Nunez for his domestic bow.

Nunez's impact was near-instant, getting in behind City's line and drawing a desperate lunge from Ederson in the area, but the linesman flagged for offside rather than a Liverpool penalty. Soon after, City's goalkeeper made a brave stop to deny the former Benfica forward.

Where one substitute went close, another then hit the net. In an interview in the matchday programme, Alvarez insisted his focus was not on matching Haaland, but instead on improving his own game. It was the Argentine forward who bundled in City's equaliser after Phil Foden forced Adrian into a save, with VAR overturning an incorrect offside call.

If City and Haaland might need time to gel fully, then the opposite should be true for Alvarez, who was a livewire from the moment he came on, becoming the third Argentinian to score in the Community Shield, after former City strikers Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez.

Though where VAR had come to City's aid for Alvarez's goal, it helped Liverpool 10 minutes later, when a Nunez header struck the arm of Ruben Dias, which referee Craig Pawson deemed to have been in an unnatural position upon checking the screen.

For all the talk of new striker signings at both club, it was perhaps fitting that a familiar face in Salah stepped up for the penalty to remind everyone involved of his quality with a firm finish into the bottom-right corner.

Arguably the most important business Liverpool could have done in the close season was their July 1 move to tie Salah down to a new contract, and the 30-year-old has been directly involved in 13 goals for Liverpool against City, his most against a single side for the Reds.

Haaland had the ball in the net at the other end early in seven minutes of stoppage time, but it did not count – Foden had failed to keep it in. Moments later, Nunez stooped low to head in Robertson's cross. He is the fourth player to have scored on his competitive Liverpool debut under Klopp, after Salah, Van Dijk and Salah.

If there was any further evidence needed that this day would not be Haaland's, the 22-year-old hit the crossbar with the goal gaping with very nearly the last kick of the match to send Liverpool's fans into further delirium. It was the best chance of the match from open play, with an xG (expected goals) rating of 0.54. He was at least able to laugh it off as a bad day at the office, but goalscorers as prolific as him do not take misses like that well.

The former Borussia Dortmund player had just 16 touches over the 90 minutes.

Haaland's day will come, perhaps even against West Ham in City's Premier League opener, but on Saturday's evidence, Liverpool have adapted to their new striker swifter than their great rivals have theirs.

 

Darwin Nunez capped a memorable debut with a clinching header as Liverpool earned a 3-1 victory against Manchester City in the Community Shield.

The Uruguay international nodded home from close range deep into injury time to confirm the first silverware of the season heads to Merseyside after an energetic, enthralling encounter at Leicester's King Power Stadium.

Trent Alexander-Arnold's first-half strike had been cancelled out by Julian Alvarez with 20 minutes to go, before Mohamed Salah put the Reds back on top from the penalty spot.

It was then Nunez whose goal made sure Jurgen Klopp completed his career clean sweep of elite English domestic honours.

The new man was forced to wait for his debut, however, after being initially named on the bench, and Liverpool did not look to need him thanks to an energetic start out of the gates.

Alexander-Arnold unfurled a fabulous strike from the edge of the box in off the left post in the 21st minute, while miscued chances for City's star buy Erling Haaland left Pep Guardiola with a frustrating first half on his hands.

The introduction of Argentina star Alvarez from the bench proved an inspired move by Spaniard Guardiola, with the former River Plate man flicking home after Phil Foden's saved effort to level matters.

But when Ruben Dias was flagged for a handball from Nunez's header with full-time fast approaching, Salah was able to put the Reds back on top with his low spot-kick.

Nunez's big moment in stoppage time confirmed the result, while Haaland hit the crossbar in the dying moments to sum up his tough day at the office.

Erling Haaland was named in Manchester City's starting line-up for the Community Shield clash with rivals Liverpool, who had Darwin Nunez on the bench.

Haaland joined City from Borussia Dortmund last month in what has been a busy transfer window for the Premier League champions.

The Norway striker scored his first goal for the club in a pre-season friendly win over Bayern Munich and Pep Guardiola has selected him to start in the traditional curtain-raiser for the English season, which is being played at Leicester City's King Power Stadium this year.

Haaland will play down the middle, flanked by Jack Grealish and former Leicester winger Riyad Mahrez.

Nathan Ake - linked with a move away from City in recent weeks - partners captain Ruben Dias at the back, with Kevin De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva and Rodri selected in midfield. Kalvin Phillips and Julian Alvarez, City's other new signings, had to settle for a place on the bench.

Nunez has been the big-money arrival at Liverpool this transfer window, but the former Benfica star was named among Jurgen Klopp's substitutes.

With goalkeeper Alisson injured, Adrian was handed a rare start for the FA Cup winners, who have Roberto Firmino leading an attacking three that also includes Mohamed Salah and Luis Diaz.

Saturday's encounter marks just the second Community Shield game between City and Liverpool, with Guardiola's side winning on penalties in 2019.

It is the first time the Community Shield has been held away from Wembley since 2012, when City beat Chelsea 3-2 at Villa Park.

This weekend's Community Shield sees the new English domestic season begin as the last one ended, with Manchester City and Liverpool doing battle.

City pipped Liverpool to the Premier League title, but the Reds got the better of Pep Guardiola's men in their FA Cup semi-final, going on to beat Chelsea in the decider and book their place in Saturday's curtain-raiser.

These two are expected to lead the way once again in 2022-23, yet plenty has changed in their ranks since they were last in action – particularly in attack.

At the Etihad Stadium, Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling have departed to be replaced by Erling Haaland and Julian Alvarez.

With Haaland's arrival perhaps the most notable in the Premier League during this close-season, Liverpool responded with their own big-money big man up front; Darwin Nunez was signed from Benfica to be flanked by the returning Mohamed Salah, but Sadio Mane is gone.

After several years of success at the forefront of English football, Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp appear set to reshape their teams around their latest buys.

Both managers lined up last season primarily without a traditional number nine.

Jesus may return to that role after joining Arsenal, but City's sole centre-forward often played from the right in 2021-22, taking only 16.0 per cent of his Premier League touches in the penalty area.

Haaland, by contrast, took 20.7 per cent of his Bundesliga touches in the box for Borussia Dortmund last term, which explains how a staggering 96.3 per cent of his shots were taken from inside the area – by far a higher share than that of any forward who played for City or Liverpool.

That mark comfortably tops Nunez's (74.1 per cent of shots in the box), too, but the 23-year-old also brings something new to a Reds outfit who have often deployed a false nine through the middle.

Roberto Firmino was that man for a long time and took only 9.5 per cent of his touches in the area last season. Nunez took a mammoth 24.5 per cent of his Primeira Liga touches within 18 yards of goal.

Staying in such positions so regularly helped to boost the shot conversion rates of Haaland (27.5 per cent) and Nunez (30.6 per cent), although both still impressively outperformed their expected goals (xG) totals; Haaland scored 22 from an xG of 18.5, while Nunez netted 26 from an xG of 18.4.

In fact, the numbers suggest Divock Origi was the only player across the best two squads in the Premier League who performed in a manner akin to that which might now be expected of the superstar duo.

Origi, who has left Liverpool for Milan, took 21.7 per cent of his touches in the box, and his shoot-on-sight policy saw an attempt at goal for every 6.9 touches (9.3 for Haaland, 9.8 for Nunez).

Yet this perhaps spoke as much to Origi's role as Liverpool's specialist rescue act as anything else; he made only seven appearances, all from the bench for a combined 126 minutes, yet scored three goals, converting 30.0 per cent of his shots.

Over the course of his time under Klopp, when he was occasionally asked to play wide, Origi's statistics were more in line with those of his former team-mates. Only 13.3 per cent of his touches came in the box, just 68.9 per cent of his shots were from within the same range, and those attempts arrived every 16.4 touches on average.

Maybe Klopp will also ask Nunez to push wide and stretch the play, maintaining the fluid forward line that saw winger Mane increasingly used through the centre in big games.

That should not necessarily hamper Nunez's hopes of scoring regularly; Salah could afford to marginally underperform his xG (23.8) and still strike 23 times in the league last season, playing from the right but taking 19.6 per cent of his touches in the box and needing only 12.4 on average to attempt a shot.

Prior to last season, Guardiola had at least been able to incorporate at City the sort of penalty-box striker he has signed in Haaland.

Sergio Aguero averaged a shot every 10.0 touches under Pep, with 17.8 per cent of his touches across five seasons coming inside the area.

And Haaland brings more to his game, too, if only due to his sheer size. The 1.94-metre ex-Dortmund man won 57.6 per cent of his aerial duels in 2021-22 – no City or Liverpool forward won more than half, with Nunez also lagging on 40.6 per cent.

But perhaps the former Guardiola player whose profile most resembles Haaland's is Zlatan Ibrahimovic – and his Barcelona career was not Pep's biggest success story.

Just as City will have to adapt to Haaland – perhaps by allowing him to compete aerially from a few of their trademark cutback crosses – so will he to them. The forward completed just 71.3 per cent of his passes in the league last season; that lax level of link-up is unlikely to wash in a Guardiola side, as Jesus (84.8 per cent), Sterling (85.4 per cent) and Riyad Mahrez (90.0 per cent) will attest.

Nunez completed 67.1 per cent of his league passes, which would similarly rank him last among Liverpool forwards, but he should at least be familiar with the high-pressing approach enforced by Klopp.

Liverpool led the Premier League in high turnovers (443 or 11.7 per game), average starting position (45.5m upfield) and opposition passes per defensive action (9.9 PPDA), while Benfica (9.0 high turnovers per game, 44.4m starting position and 8.7 PPDA) unsurprisingly ranked in the Primeira Liga's top three in each category.

So, there is plenty to be excited about both in Manchester and in Liverpool and yet great scope for potential teething problems.

The forthcoming title tussle could well be decided by how successfully Haaland and Nunez fit into these ruthless, relentless winning machines, and Saturday provides an early opportunity to assess that process.

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