Despite plenty of Liverpool players dispersing out all over the world to represent their countries last week, only the defenders saw any action in the first round of matches.
Jordan Henderson and Diogo Jota both spent the 90 minutes on the bench for their countries’ victory in the first round of 2024 Euro qualifying. England prevailed 2-1 over Italy, while Portugal clobbered poor Liechtenstein by a score of 4-0, leaving them both atop their respective groups after one game. Please note that this humble writer is not complaining about this situation, though the players themselves might feel differently.
Players who got time on the pitch were all defenders — though Virgil van Dijk might have wished he’d stayed back on Merseyside. Ibrahima Konaté played the whole game against his center-back partner, helping France to a 4-0 victory against van Dijk’s Netherlands. This puts France in first in group B and Netherlands dead last, though positions mean almost nothing this early into qualifying.
Elsewhere in group B, Kostas Tsimikas played in most of Greece’s 3-0 victory over Gibraltar, tucking Greece right below France in the standings.
Finally, Andy Robertson led Scotland to a 1-0 victory against Cyprus in group A.