The league campaign started yesterday for the 2017-18 season and despite all the promising showings of preseason, Liverpool did not get it started on the right foot. The Reds fell victim to the same problems as always when they traveled to Vicarage Road, giving away a stoppage time goal off a set piece to end the match in a 3-3 draw. Disappointment and frustration may not scratch the surface of what many are feeling, including the players.
“We’re disappointed because we deserved to win,” Sadio Mané, who had opened the scoring for the Reds, told the club website. “We should have defended better in this kind of game, it’s always complicated with long balls. It’s the first game of the season and we’re going to try to work hard for the next games.
“No excuses – everybody is fit. We’re unlucky we didn’t get three points because we were looking for that, but the next game we’re going to be ready to get three points to make our fans happy.”
With games stacked upon each other this year, it doesn’t do well to dwell on those disappointments. After all, the first leg of Liverpool’s Champions League qualifier is on Tuesday and then it’s back to the league on Saturday. Mané was quick to add praise for his teammates, taking the positives from everyone else’s contributions.
“They are great players. They showed again they can do well and try to help the team. I’m happy for them, but we should have done even better to get three points,” Mané added, in regards to Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah, both of which scored yesterday.
Now Mané and the rest of the team will be using the match against Hoffenheim and the quick turnaround as hopefully motivation to help them push past this difficult moment.
“We are all professionals. This can happen in football. With all due respect to Watford, we should have won, we were the better team. But it’s football. We’ll accept it, forget it and try to be ready for the next game.”