LONDON – Japan worldwide Takumi Minamino scored his first purpose for Liverpool within the Neighborhood Defend in opposition to Arsenal on Saturday, however the English Premier League champion misplaced in a penalty shootout.
Minamino, who transferred from Austrian champion Salzburg in January, slotted previous Emiliano Martinez within the 73rd minute at Wembley Stadium to make it 1-1 earlier than the match was pressured into penalties.
Liverpool supervisor Jurgen Klopp praised Minamino’s efficiency and known as the 25-year-old’s maiden strike an necessary step in his profession with the membership.
“It was large for him and massive for us as a result of it was the one factor he lacked since he’s with us,” Klopp mentioned throughout a press convention. “He didn’t rating a purpose (earlier than), however had conditions and was shut in loads of moments.”
“The form he’s in is clearly good, I feel everyone might see when he got here on. Then, the purpose is kind of the logical step after acting on the extent he performs now, particularly within the pre-season.”
Klopp mentioned he expects Minamino to “be an actual participant” for Liverpool now that he has had time to regulate to the league and his new life in England, made in particular difficult by the coronavirus pandemic.
“He can have an effect, that’s why we signed him,” he mentioned. “It was not solely the purpose at this time. He’s in between, he’s actually good in small areas, his first contact is phenomenal, then his decision-making between the strains is absolutely fast.”
“He got here in in essentially the most tough interval of all our lives, I’d say, and needed to adapt to various things, being alone in England within the lockdown and all that stuff… However he dealt very well with it as a result of he’s an excellent skilled. So I’m actually happy for him that he might rating the purpose at this time and that’s one other large step for him.”
Minamino was heading in the right direction within the shootout however Rhian Brewster struck the crossbar as Liverpool misplaced the Neighborhood Defend on penalties for the second straight yr. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang put Arsenal forward within the first half.
The Neighborhood Defend is contested yearly between the Premier League champion and winner of the FA Cup.
Liverpool, aiming to win a second straight Premier League title, will face Leeds United of their first match of the 2020-2021 season on Sept. 12.