For Liverpool, only two words were needed.Job done.Their flying start to the new Premier League campaign goes on. Played two, won two, scored six, conceded none. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! Job done. “Pretty cool,” as Jurgen Klopp would say.Klopp knew that this game, under the lights and in front of one of the Premier League’s noisiest home crowds, would tell him more about his side than last week’s Sunday stroll against West Ham at Anfield. He knew they would not have things all their own way against a speedy, tenacious Crystal Palace outfit, that their concentration and their character and their speed and their toughness would be tested. Roy Hodgson’s side, he said, are “just a really good football team” – one who would thoroughly examine the Reds’ credentials.That they did. Liverpool’s second win of the new season was far uglier than the first, but no less important. If they want to be genuine challengers instead of just the aesthetes’ choice, these are the games they have to negotiate. They have to be solid as well as spectacular.Last season, you were more likely to see the Reds win 7-0 than 1-0. Their last win by that scoreline came a-year-and-a-day ago, ironically against Palace. Sadio Mane, in stoppage time, made sure that run continued. The scoreline probably deserved the gloss in truth.Klopp’s team favour thrashings over slogs, but they were made to work here. Goals at the end of each half gave them the points, on a night when they were asked to dig deep, defend well and keep their composure. “It wasn’t a brilliant performance,” the manager said. “But it was a win, it was enough!”There was no goal for Mohamed Salah here – though he had a vital hand in both – and none for Roberto Firmino either. Mane raced clear at the end to notch his second of the season, but this was not a game for Liverpool’s front three to steal the show.Instead, Klopp will look to his other heroes. To Alisson Becker, who was as assured as can be on his first Premier League away start. The goalkeeper’s ability to pass the ball began several Liverpool counterattacks, while he made a crucial save at 1-0 to keep out Luka Milivojevic’s free-kick. His handling, whether under high balls or skidding shots, was faultless. “Outstanding,” Klopp said.In front of him, Virgil van Dijk did what Virgil van Dijk does, winning header after header against Christian Benteke and ensuring that the Reds’ penalty area was kept secure and that their attacks had a starting point. What a class act the former Southampton man is, what a difference he has made to this team. Benteke has been a thorn in Liverpool’s side many times in the past, but he was pocketed here by the Dutchman. As Palace chased the game, the Belgian was taken off. He looked relieved. Alexander Sorloth, his equally physical replacement, had no joy either.Alongside Van Dijk, Joe Gomez underlined his emergence as a serious centre-back option for Klopp this season. The England international made one crucial tackle to thwart Wilfried Zaha in the first half and seems to be growing into the role alongside his £75 million colleague. Dejan Lovren will expect to return once fit, but the issue is less clear now than it was a fortnight ago.Elsewhere, James Milner extended his run of never having lost a Premier League game in which he has scored. It stands at 48 now, after the captain slotted a penalty just before half-time. Palace felt Salah had fallen theatrically under Mamadou Sakho’s challenge; Liverpool fans merely rolled their eyes at their former defender’s rashness in the box.Milner, at 32, is very much the elder statesman of this Liverpool squad but his engine shows no sign of slowing. He set the tone in terms of aggression, putting one particularly good challenge in on Zaha in the first half, and buzzed about the pitch, filling spaces, winning second balls, connecting with team-mates.Never flashy, always effective. He’ll play many, many games this season, despite Klopp’s plethora of midfield options. Fabinho, the £40m summer signing, was not even named in the matchday squad for this one; he has a job on his hands as the likes of Milner and Gini Wijnaldum raise their game, but that’s what a side like Liverpool needs. It needs options, for the days when the sun shines and the days when it rains, for the games like last week’s and the games like this one. With Jordan Henderson and Adam Lallana used off the bench here, Xherdan Shaqiri not and Daniel Sturridge getting just 60 seconds, the strength of the squad looks good. For now. Klopp cut a satisfied figure at his post-match press conference, and no wonder. He had spoken in the build-up of the need to “deliver, again and again and again.” The idea, he said, was not “to celebrate all week and then fall hard” and his side heeded his warnings. They weren’t perfect, but they were good enough. They looked like contenders pre-season, and nothing we have seen in the opening two games has changed that. Manchester City have set the tone, but Liverpool look ready to follow.Strap yourselves in… Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the web
Transfers Klopp rules out Liverpool approach for Aubameyang Goal 04:33 1/28/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Transfers Liverpool Borussia Dortmund FA Cup Bundesliga Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Arsenal The Gabon international endured a goalless afternoon in his first outing of 2018, but his former boss is not looking for a reunion Jurgen Klopp has ruled out any chance of a reunion with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at Liverpool after denying the Reds were interested in the striker. Aubameyang started his first game of 2018 on Saturday as Borussia Dortmund were held to a draw by Freiburg, having sat out their previous match due to a club suspension.The Gabon international’s future is in doubt in Signal Iduna Park, as BVB negotiate his sale with Arsenal which is yet to be resolved. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player But when asked about his former Dortmund charge, Klopp defended the 28-year-old’s behaviour but dismissed the idea of taking him to Anfield. “Auba is really a good guy. Of course, reading the newspapers, you ask yourself if all these things must happen,” the Liverpool manager explained to DAZN.”But in fact things are mostly not that controversial as they are presented. In the end everybody will be happy.”In the first half of the season he also scored often although last summer he wanted to go to China allegedly.”He is a great player but he does not play in a position for which we urgently need new players.” Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the web
The Jazz Foundation of America will hold its annual A Great Night In Harlem event on October 24 at the Apollo Theater, honoring Herbie Hancock.The event will feature a rare combination of all-time legends and unknown gems from the worlds of jazz, blues, rock, R&B and more.Here is your chance to witness history as Herbie Hancock receives a Lifetime Achievement Award from Quincy Jones, with special guest Bruce Willis.Herbie himself will lead an all-star tribute to trumpeter Clark Terry. 10-time GRAMMY winner Chaka Khan will pay homage to Maurice White (of Earth, Wind and Fire) with help from special guests including powerhouse Sheila E. (drummer for Prince, Beyoncé and Marvin Gaye).As always, there will be seat-rocking talent from young gems like the soon-to-be-famous Cuban sensation Jorge Luis Pacheco and 13-year-old piano prodigy Matthew Whitaker, plus veterans like “The Soul of America” Charles Bradley, not to mention the wonderful surprises to be announced.The Jazz Foundation of America (JFA) is committed to providing financial, medical and legal assistance to those great jazz and blues veterans who have paid their dues by making a lifetime of this music and find themselves in crisis due to illness, age and/or circumstance.To find out more about the event, click here.