While wantaway Raheem Sterling was reportedly undergoing a medical ahead of an expected move to Manchester City, his Liverpool team-mates were busy kicking off their pre-season schedule with a 4-0 victory over Thai Premier League All Stars.
Manager Brendan Rodgers announced on Monday that a deal for Sterling’s exit had been agreed, with the England forward having been left behind to complete a transfer.
But Sterling will have been far from Rodgers’ thoughts as he watched his players contend with rapidly worsening weather conditions to register a comfortable win at the Rajamangala National Stadium.
Adam Bogdan, Joe Gomez and Danny Ings all made their Liverpool bows as part of the visitors’ starting XI, while Joao Teixeira was selected just three months after breaking his leg on loan at Brighton and Hove Albion.
Liverpool were quick out of the blocks and, having flicked an earlier effort into the arms of Walut Makemusik, Lazar Markovic latched onto Teixeira’s neat throughball to round the goalkeeper and tuck home from a tight angle.
Ings looked hungry for a debut goal, but was denied well by Makemusik after receiving a Rossiter cutback, before Teixeira blazed over from the rebound.
The former Burnley man had an effort disallowed after 24 minutes thanks to a Mamadou Sakho foul in the build-up, although the decision looked to be a harsh one.
The hosts could be thankful to Makemusik for keeping them in the tie – Rossiter next to be expertly denied by the keeper – but he was helpless to stop Sakho heading home unmarked three minutes from the interval.
It was all change at half-time as Rodgers opted to select a completely different XI – Nathaniel Clyne, James Milner and Divock Origi given their first opportunities to shine – but it was one of last year’s signings, Adam Lallana, who made it 3-0 after getting on the end of a delightful flick from new captain Jordan Henderson.
The heavens had opened at half-time, having an adverse impact on the pace of the match, although Origi – who spent last season on loan at Lille – came close with two efforts that struck the woodwork.
Thai Premier League All Stars themselves found the crossbar when a free-kick that deflected off Martin Skrtel late one but Origi wrapped up the win by heading his first goal for the club in the 86th minute.
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