Jürgen Klopp certainly hoped for more at the start of the Premier League season: Liverpool FC cannot get past a draw against Fulham FC. In the end, the runners-up can even count themselves lucky, because the promoted team leads twice in a hard-fought game.
Jürgen Klopp dropped points with Liverpool on the first day of the Premier League. The weakened cup-winning team of the German coach only came 2-2 (0-1) at strong promoted FC Fulham on Saturday after falling behind twice. Fulham's new signing, German goalkeeper Bernd Leno, was not used.
Striker Alexander Mitrovic, who was top scorer in the second division last season with 46 goals and a wide margin, put the hosts in the Craven Cottage stadium twice in the lead with a header (32nd minute) and a penalty (72nd). New signing Darwin Núñez (62') and star striker Mohamed Salah (80') equalized for Liverpool. Just before the final whistle, Jordan Henderson missed the chance for the runners-up to win when he hit the crossbar with a long-range shot.
Klopp had to be without numerous players at the start of the league due to injuries, including Ibrahima Konate, Naby Keita, Curtis Jones and Diogo Jota. Liverpool's new signing Fabio Carvalho, who had played for Fulham last season, made a brief appearance. Liverpool coach Jürgen Klopp was disappointed afterwards: "The best thing about the game is the result, a really bad game," he told BT. "Maybe we could have won the game because we had better chances, but maybe we just didn't deserve it."
Núñez, who switched from Benfica to Liverpool before the season for a transfer fee of at least 75 and at most more than 100 million euros, came on in the 51st minute - and, according to data provider OptaJoe, became only the third player who scored one goal himself and one assist coming off the bench on his Premier League debut.
Champion Manchester City will start the mission of defending their title with their noble newcomer Erling Haaland on Sunday at West Ham United.