28 July 2014 05:31
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers believes his team have plenty of goals in them post Luis Suarez.
Suarez, who has joined Barcelona, scored 31 of his team’s 101 Premier League goals last season.
Speaking after his side’s 1-0 win over Olympiacos on Sunday, Rodgers said he had already seen enough to be confident in his team’s attack.
Raheem Sterling scored the only goal in Chicago, with Daniel Sturridge and new signing Lazar Markovic also starting.
“I see it in the players that scored 70-odd goals last season. It’s very simple,” Rodgers told reporters.
“Luis Suarez isn’t a Liverpool player so I don’t need to talk about or reference Luis Suarez.
“I’ll just worry about the players I have, who showed in enough games last season and the season before, when we didn’t have Luis, that we can score goals. That won’t be an issue.”
Rodgers said Sturridge, who scored 21 league goals in 2013-14, was ready to take another step up, while he praised Sterling and Markovic.
“I’ve seen a difference in Daniel since he came back,” he said.
“He has obviously got confidence from the World Cup and his season last year.
“I think he’s ready to take on the mantle. He got 20-odd goals last season so he’s a striker of great value.
“Markovic will only get better and better. He showed great strength when he burst through and hopefully later on when he picks up that speed and sharpness in his game, he’ll go on and finish that.
“We’ve got good speed. Raheem Sterling is always a threat – he’s a joy to watch. I thought those three were really exciting.”
Rodgers said he was delighted with his team’s progress, insisting the focus was still on fitness.
“I was very pleased,” the Northern Irishman said.
“In the first half we started the game very well, our passing was crisp and precise. We scored a very good goal and we looked a real threat at the top end of the field, both in combination play and on the counter-attack.
“I was also very pleased with how we defended. We had good shape early in pre-season. We made changes in the game and the young players had some minutes on the field.
“Some of our players who had only been back for a week or so got 45 to 60 minutes. Overall, I was delighted.”