Liverpool fired themselves into an early lead in their pre-season friendly against Athletic Bilbao this afternoon, with Sadio Mane and Diogo Jota combining to lift the spirits at Anfield.
In the 12th minute of the encounter, the Reds forced a costly mistake from the La Liga side with their trademark intense pressing forcing Bilbao to play a risky pass out the back.
The Bilbao receiver slipped up as he braced for pressure from James Milner, which slid the ball into the path of Naby Keita.
Keita composed himself and passed the ball into Sadio Mane, who controlled the ball before laying it off to Diogo Jota.
The 24-year-old knocked the ball forward before drilling it into the back of the net from close range.
— catusername (@zharentes) August 8, 2021
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Pictures from LFC TV.
Jota also scored in the Reds’ last set of friendlies, with the Portuguese ace notching the winner in one of the two one-hour warm-up ties against Bologna on Thursday.
The versatile forward, who is featuring down the middle tonight, certainly looks like he’s raring to go after a solid debut campaign that would’ve been even better if it wasn’t for a knee injury.