Layton Stewart's 88th-minute goal gave Liverpool U18s a 3-2 win from an entertaining league clash with Stoke City at the Academy on Saturday.
Jake Cain and Tom Hill had scored first-half goals for the young Reds, who were twice pegged back by the visitors and looked likely to have to settle for a point.
But Stewart’s excellent late finish, lobbed over the goalkeeper, means Barry Lewtas’ side have made an 100 per cent start to the U18 Premier League season.
Stoke fashioned the first chance on a bright morning in Kirkby as Jai Verma sought to pounce on a cross from the right but was denied by a crucial Jarell Quansah block at the last.
And within moments, the hosts took the lead.
After a quick turnover of possession in the ninth minute, Matteo Ritaccio smartly slid a pass through to the forward run of Cain and the No.8 guided a low finish beyond the goalkeeper.
It could have been two courtesy of a smooth passing exchange involving the same two Reds but Ritaccio’s square cross just eluded Stewart and then James Balagizi as they rushed into the box.
Stoke’s assured play was undiminished, though, and they deservedly levelled the score shortly before the half-hour mark.
A cleared corner was recycled for Adam Porter to lift in a deep cross from the left. Lewis Macari’s header across goal struck the opposite post and Ethan Varian forced the ball over the goalline if it were needed.
Liverpool struck again, however, and this time through Hill. The midfielder broke into space inside the area and spotted a chance to sweep a clinical shot into the left corner.
Ben Winterbottom preserved that advantage four minutes before the interval, blocking a first-time hit from Varian after Verma had found his teammate with a cross.
Niall Brookwell and Fidel O’Rourke were introduced at the outset of the second half and each went close to extending the Reds’ lead in the early stages.
Brookwell, indeed, was denied twice in quick succession. First he had a close-range effort cleared off the line and then, once the ball was sent back into the box, his blast on the turn was brilliantly tipped over by Stoke goalkeeper Paul Cooper.
Cooper next punched away a firm strike from O’Rourke, who had held off his marker well to ensure a chance to shoot in the right channel.
The end-to-end nature of the game continued, with opportunities for both teams. And the next one was taken by Stoke with a quarter of an hour remaining.
Soiyir Sanali made ground down the left flank with his pace and ball control before pulling a pass back to Pat Jarrett. He delicately dispatched a dipping finish over Winterbottom for 2-2.
As Liverpool pushed for a clinching third goal, Brookwell sent an angled drive too high and Stewart’s low punt was blocked by the ‘keeper from an inviting Ritaccio centre.
But there was still time for a stunning final flourish.
Cain knocked forward an accurate long pass into the area and Stewart met it with a perfect touch over the goalkeeper and into the back of the net for a late, late win.
Liverpool U18s: Winterbottom, Quansah (Brookwell, 46), Norris, Savage, Koumetio, Clarkson, Hill, Cain, Stewart, Balagizi (O’Rourke, 46), Ritaccio.
Unused substitutes: Beck, Kelly, Wilson.
The Reds are only three games into the domestic campaign—with only two of those being classed as competitive—but the rigours are already beginning to show.
To add to that, many of Liverpool’s key players were put through 120 minutes in sticky Turkish heat on Wednesday night on their way to a penalty-shootout win over Chelsea in the UEFA Super Cup.
Will the injuries take their toll on the south coast, or can Klopp oversaw a third consecutive win?
Check This Is Anfield for the latest team news ahead of the match.
You can also follow the game by downloading the This is Anfield app, including lineups, live coverage and all the reaction and analysis.
The match gets underway at 3pm (BST)—or 10am in New York, 7am in Los Angeles, midnight in Sydney, 6pm in Dubai and 5pm in Nairobi.UK Viewers
Check our Rest of the World TV guide below for a list of TV broadcasters showing the match live.
[embedded content]Rest of the World
Supporters can find the Reds’ first Premier League away trip of the season on the following channels worldwide:
beIN Sports HD 11, beIN SPORTS CONNECT, beIN Sports HD 2, RMC Sport 1, SL2G, SuperSport Maximo, SuperSport 3 Africa, Flow Sports PL, Flow Sports App, ESPN2 Sur, ESPN Play Sur, Optus Sport, Sky Go, Sky Sport 1 HD, Idman TV, VOOsport World 1, Play Sports 1 Canal+ Sport 2 Afrique, SportKlub 1 Serbia, Watch ESPN Brasil, DAZN Brasil, Astro Go, Diema Sport 2, Play Diema Xtra, QQ Sports Live, CCTV 5+ VIP, PPTV Sport China, CCTV-5, ESPN2 Andina, Sky HD, Sportklub 1 Croatia, DIGI GO, Premier Sport, TV3 MAX, Viaplay Denmark, TVPlay Sports, TVPlay SportsX, Fiji One, Viasat Sports Premium, Viaplay Finland, RMC Sport en direct, Canal+ Sport, Now E, Now Player, 621 Now Premier League 1, 620 Now Premier League TV, Siminn, SiminnSport, TVRI, Mola TV, SPOTV ON, Astro SuperSport 3, Blue To Go Video Everywhere, SPS HD, Skynet Sports 6, Ziggo Sport Select, Ziggo Sport 14, Spark Sport, TV2 Sport Premium, TV2 Sumo, Canal+ Sport 2 Poland, Canal+ Sport Online, nc+ GO, Sport TV2, Eurosport Romania, 102 (HD) mio Stadium, SportKlub 1 Slovenia, DAZN Spain, Viaplay Sweden, Sky Sport 1 Switzerland, True Premier Football HD 2, True Premier Football HD 1, S Sport+, S Sport, Digiturk Play, Setanta Sports Ukraine
You can follow all the action today and throughout 2019/20 with us by downloading the This is Anfield app for iPhone and Android for free.
It's very, very early days in the Premier League but Divock Origi knows one thing: Liverpool's players will give everything to go one better than last season.
"It's going to be a very tough year in the Premier League again, which makes it interesting," the Reds striker commented this week.
"We like a challenge. Mentally, we're a group of fighters, we go out there and play our game. We have a lot of respect for the other teams. It could be a tight race, it's hard for me to tell.
"What I do know is that we're very hungry and we're going to challenge every team and try to win every game possible - and hopefully win something at the end of the year."
Venue – St Mary’s, Southampton
Referee – Andre Marriner
Date & Time – Saturday, August 17th @ 15:00
Current Odds – Southampton 11/2, Draw 15/4, Liverpool 4/9
Any win will do on Saturday. It’s only the second gameweek of the Premier League season and already it feels like the pressure is on thanks to the style in which Manchester City obliterated West Ham last Saturday.
Liverpool, hopefully buoyed by their UEFA Super Cup success on Wednesday, will need all the energy they can muster on the south coast this Saturday afternoon.FORM
The Saints lost 3-0 at Burnley last weekend. Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men looked impressive in the early stages at Turf Moor but Burnley then just stole the game from them.
Southampton will be eager to get off to a winning start on their home ground for the 2019/20 season.
Liverpool beat Norwich City 4-1 last Friday at Anfield to get their Premier League campaign off to a winning start. On Wednesday night, Jurgen Klopp’s side overcame Chelsea in a penalty shootout victory to lift the UEFA Super Cup in Istanbul.
The bad news from the Super Cup was that the teams had to play 120 a high-tempo game in 120 minutes of the Turkish heat and humidity. Many Liverpool players were out on their feet by the end of the night.TEAM NEWS
Southampton Team News
Southampton are not missing any players through injury or suspension currently.
Ralph Hasenhuttl went with a 3-5-2 formation at Burnley so we could see the same shape again from The Saints on Saturday.
As always, Nathan Redmond is one to watch as his pace can cause havoc for defences on the counter-attack.
Liverpool Team News
Alisson and Nathaniel Clyne miss the game for Liverpool through injury. Naby Keita is also a major doubt after he had to leave training early ahead of the UEFA Super Cup meeting with Chelsea during the week.
Klopp will have a lot of tired players to consider on Saturday. Joe Gomez could move back into central defence making way for Trent Alexander-Arnold to start at right-back.
In midfield, Fabinho suffered a lot from cramp on Wednesday. He will probably be on the bench for this game. Therefore, Gini Wijnaldum could start in the ‘6’ role with James Milner and Jordan Henderson ahead of him.
Up front, Roberto Firmino should start alongside Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané.PREDICTED LINEUPS
Southampton XI (3-5-2) – Gunn; Bednarek, Vestergaard, Danso; Valery, Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Hojbjerg, Bertrand; Redmond, Adams
Liverpool XI (4-3-3) – Adrian; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Wijnaldum, Henderson, Milner; Salah, Firmino, ManéWHEN THEY LAST MET
Liverpool won 3-1 at St Mary’s when the sides met in April. Shane Long put the home side in front before goals from Naby Keita, Mohamed Salah and Jordan Henderson gave The Reds a hard-fought victory in an entertaining game.PREDICTION
Southampton 1 – 2 Liverpool
It’s not going to be an easy afternoon for Liverpool on Saturday. Southampton will be itching to set things straight after suffering a heavy 3-0 defeat at Burnley on the opening weekend of the season. Winning their first home game of 2019/20 would be the ideal quick-fix for Hasenhuttl’s side. However, Jurgen Klopp’s Reds are one of the best teams in Europe right now. Liverpool’s tired legs to win, just about.
Philippe Coutinho thundered a 30-yard rocket in off the crossbar as Liverpool beat Southampton 2-0 at St Mary's in February 2015, but can you recall the rest of the Reds' starting XI from that rain-soaked afternoon?
It took the Brazilian just two minutes and 43 seconds to give Brendan Rodgers' side the lead in the Premier League clash, with Raheem Sterling confirming the three points when he swept in Matt Targett's scuffed clearance after 73 minutes.
But who else featured in the victory that day? Can you fill in the Missing Men?
Fill in the blanks in the quiz below, or click the Next button at the bottom of this article to reveal the Missing Men...
The tight turnaround between Liverpool's trip to Southampton and the UEFA Super Cup triumph has been somewhat eased by the euphoria of lifting silverware, according to Adrian.
Jürgen Klopp's side head to St Mary's today for their second Premier League fixture of the season after returning home from Istanbul on Thursday.
The showpiece at Besiktas Park in midweek involved extra-time and penalties following a hard-fought 2-2 draw, although Adrian believes the fact the Reds emerged victors should ensure they head to Southampton with a spring in their step.
"When you win you have a positive mind and the recovery is quickest and your body feels much better," the goalkeeper told Liverpoolfc.com.
"We know it was a very long game with extra-time and we have to fly back to Liverpool. But I have a good feeling that the people are really focussed on the next game, the Premier League.
"If we want to win the title, we need to make sure we're going to go for all the games 100 per cent."
Deputising for the injured Alisson Becker, Adrian's decisive save from Tammy Abraham in the shootout in Turkey saw him pick up a winner's medal on just his 10th day as a Liverpool player.
Now, the Spaniard is determined to record the first clean sheet of his Reds career in what could be his third appearance for the club.
"It could be the next step after the debut at Anfield and the first title on Wednesday," he continued.
"It could be a great step forward to keep the first clean sheet at Southampton on Saturday."
Today's opponents opened their 2019-20 league campaign with a disappointing 3-0 defeat away at Burnley, leaving Adrian prepared for a response this afternoon.
The 32-year-old said: "It's a different game, they play at home, so they want to make a good game in front of their fans.
"Obviously they know we are Liverpool and we're going to go there to try and win. We need to do our jobs to the best of us and I think we can get the three points."
Liverpool U18s are in action on Saturday as they host Stoke City at the Academy - watch the game live on LFCTV GO from 10.55am BST.
Barry Lewtas' side started 2019-20 with a thumping 7-1 win at Blackburn Rovers last weekend - tune in to watch their second outing of the season this morning, with kick-off set for 11am.
All the key match details you need to know ahead of Liverpool's Premier League clash with Southampton.
The game will be held at St Mary's with kick-off at 3pm BST.
How to follow
Listen to live commentary on the full 90 minutes here on Liverpoolfc.com. Steve Hunter and Nigel Spackman will call the action as it happens.
Get post-match reaction on LFCTV GO after the full-time whistle, with short match highlights available from 7pm BST.
Extended highlights will be published at midnight. Join LFCTV GO now and claim your first month for free.
The last meeting
A frantic Friday night contest between the sides in April saw title-chasing Liverpool emerge 3-1 winners.
Shane Long put Saints ahead but Naby Keita equalised before the break and late goals from Mohamed Salah and Jordan Henderson secured three points for the Reds.
What the managers say
“Southampton is a really strong side with a very specific style of play. We had enough time to analyse them, it’s just that we had to do it immediately after coming back from the other game. We saw two pre-season games and the game against Burnley, so we have all the informations we need. They didn’t play as bad as the 3-0 looks and they will still be full of desire and confidence."
"I want to see a reaction from the team that is really believing in what they are doing and stay on the track until the last minute. If we are like that then we are not so easy to beat."
A win for Liverpool would secure an 11th successive Premier League victory and equal the club's record.
Referee: Andre Marriner
Assistants: Scott Ledger, Simon Long
Fourth official: John Brooks
VAR: Craig Pawson
Assistant VAR: Richard West
Jürgen Klopp will break a club record set by Kenny Dalglish if Liverpool avoid defeat against Southampton on Saturday.
A draw in the Premier League clash at St Mary's will see Klopp amass 300 points in fewer games than any other Liverpool manager in history.
The meeting with Southampton will be the boss' 146th league match in charge. Dalglish reached the landmark in 150 games during the 1980s.
For more need-to-know pre-match facts and figures, courtesy of club statistician Ged Rea, read on...
Liverpool's biggest ever Premier League win came against Southampton - a 7-1 victory at Anfield in January 1999.
The two sides have met 40 times in total during the Premier League era, with the Reds winning 20 and the Saints 10.
There has been just one goalless draw at Southampton in 44 league meetings - in November 2016.
Jordan Henderson could captain Liverpool for the 100th time in the Premier League.
Divock Origi's first goals for Liverpool were his hat-trick at St Mary's in a League Cup tie in 2015. The Belgian is the only LFC player to have scored a treble at Southampton.
Mohamed Salah has scored five goals in his four Reds appearances against Southampton. Only Robbie Fowler (eight) and Michael Owen (seven) have found the net more for Liverpool against the Saints in the Premier League era.
Liverpool have completed three league doubles over Southampton in the last five seasons - including last term, when Klopp's side won 3-0 at Anfield and 3-1 at St Mary's.
The Reds have lost just one of their last 40 Premier League games and have won their last 10 - only the seventh time the club has reached double figures.
Liverpool's best Premier League winning streak is 11 matches, set between February and April 2014, and the longest sequence in their history saw them win 12 in a row in 1990, from April to October.
UEFA Super Cup winners Liverpool return to Premier League action on Saturday as they travel to the south coast to take on Southampton at St Mary's Stadium.
It took extra-time and penalties to decide the European final against Chelsea in Istanbul on Wednesday, so it will be a quick turnaround between matches for Jürgen Klopp's Reds.
Meanwhile, Ralph Hasenhuttl's Saints head into the match on the back of a 3-0 defeat in their season-opening fixture at Burnley and will be eager to rectify that in front of their own fans.
So, what can we expect from the hosts on Saturday? We caught up with chief sports writer at the Southern Daily Echo and Total Saints Podcast co-founder Adam Leitch (@adamleitchsport) to find out.
A tough opening result, but what positives did you take from the game at Burnley?
Saints competed well for an hour but then lost the game in 12 minutes of madness when they lost their heads and conceded three goals.
It was a heavy defeat, but ultimately there was little to choose between the sides other than a small and decisive patch in what was a tough opening-day fixture in poor weather conditions.
Do you expect many changes in personnel against Liverpool on Saturday?
There will be some, but it’s hard to judge how many. The bigger question will be whether there is a change in system.
Saints have Kevin Danso available for a possible debut. He joined on loan from FC Augsburg late on deadline day and couldn't play against Burnley, but there is a chance he could come into the defence.
Another summer signing, winger Moussa Djenepo, is pushing for a starting spot as well.
You would also expect Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg to come back into the team. He is the captain and was due to face Burnley but had to drop out late on after being sick on the coach on the way to the ground.
What do you expect from manager Hasenhuttl and his side in his first full season in charge?
There is optimism at St Mary’s that this will be a better season.
Having so recently been used to finishing sixth, seventh and eighth in the Premier League and playing Europa League football, the last two seasons of battling relegation have been hard to take for Saints fans.
Hasenhuttl arrived in December and quickly won over supporters and has the backing of everybody connected with the club.
It is overly optimistic to expect a dramatic improvement and a return to those heady days in and around the top six, but if he could get Saints playing better football and comfortably mid-table that would represent progress.
How has the summer transfer business strengthened the squad?
Hasenhuttl has signed players in each of his three top-priority positions and so that can only be a good thing.
They all fit the mould of being young and ambitious and Saints want to get back to that sort of recruitment, accepting that if they do a great job they will move on.
Che Adams adds pace and power to the attack, Djenepo is a return to a Sadio Mane-style winger for Saints, while Danso is an important new addition to the centre-half department.
The main disappointment is that Saints have struggled to shift on the large amount of deadwood they have knocking around, which continues to hold them back.
Who will be Southampton's key player this season?
Nathan Redmond was huge for Saints last year and continues to be key to what they are trying to do. If he can have another season like last term, or hopefully even better, then that will be massive for Saints.
Where do you think the match will be won and lost?
Saints’ style should be much better suited to playing against a team like Liverpool than Burnley. However, Liverpool’s extra quality clearly makes them a very tough opponent.
After the heavy opening-day loss, Saints will be desperate for a decent start to the game. If they can prevent Liverpool from scoring in the first 20 minutes and show they can compete then they have a chance to grow into the game.
If Liverpool score early and are well on top, it will be a long afternoon for Saints.
What's your prediction for the match?
Southampton 0-2 Liverpool.
Premier League 2019-20 Premier League 2019-20
Liverpool midfielder Fabinho is back in the Brazil squad for two friendlies next month, alongside Reds teammate Roberto Firmino.
On Friday, Tite announced his 23-man selection for meetings with Peru, in Miami on September 6, and Colombia in Los Angeles four days later.
And Fabinho has returned to the Copa America champions' squad, with Firmino also included but Alisson Becker not involved due to his current calf injury.
Meanwhile, Allan Rodrigues de Souza - the Reds midfielder who is currently on loan with Fluminense - has been called up for Brazil's Olympic Selection.
They will face Colombia (September 5) and Chile (September 9) in Sao Paulo as part of their preparations for qualifying for next year's Games in Tokyo.