Klopp sends Liverpool signing message over ‘next challenge’

Matt Stead
SAALFELDEN, AUSTRIA, AUSTRIA - AUGUST 22: (THE SUN OUT. THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Rhian Brewster of Liverpool is congratulated by Kostas Tsimikas of Liverpool after the third goal during the pre-season friendly match between Liverpool and VfB Stuttgart at Saalfelden Arena on August 22, 2020 in SAALFELDEN, AUSTRIA, Austria. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Jurgen Klopp praised new Liverpool signing Kostas Tsimikas after a comfortable start to their pre-season against Stuttgart.

The Premier League champions eased to a 3-0 victory in Austria on Saturday, with Klopp expressing his satisfaction with “a super intense session” made “tricky” by the inclement weather.

Roberto Firmino, Naby Keita and Rhian Brewster were on target as Liverpool stepped up their preparations for the Community Shield next weekend.

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Left-back Tsimikas played his first game for the club since joining from Olympiakos for £11.75m as Klopp fielded a different team in the second half.

The manager said Tsimikas “showed some nice glimpses of his talent” in the victory.

“He is a pretty quick player and pretty confident, how you will hear in his interview, but he is a good player – a really good player – and he did well,” he told Liverpoolfc.com.

“The next challenge for him is now to get used to our defending and things. It will take time, no doubt, but when he has the ball it looks not so bad.”

The player himself added that he was “very happy” with his first game and “now I have to work to play more in the league games and I want to be ready for everything”.

Firmino opened the scoring in the 15th minute after good work from Curtis Jones. The Brazilian then turned provider to create the second for Keita five minutes before the interval.

Brewster, who impressed on loan at Swansea last season, added the third from a James Milner pass with 68 minutes gone.

Liverpool wrap up their Austrian training camp with a second friendly against RB Salzburg on Tuesday.

The Reds might be surprised to hear that they face competition from Arsenal for the signature of Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara.

Reports emerged on Sunday suggesting Arsenal were interested in the 29-year-old, although they have raised the same financial concerns as Liverpool when it comes to formalising a move.