How Fulham stunned Liverpool in EPL opener

• Klopp blames pitch dryness for surreal result

By Oviri Kelvin, Sports Editor

Newly promoted Premier League side Fulham stunned the season’s Community Shield winners Liverpool at the Craven Cottage to a 2-2 draw.

Unpredicted to happen, following the stint of the Reds and their actions in the summer transfer window where newbies were added to bolster the squad for the new season, Fulham got the first goal from Aleksandar Mitrović in 32 minutes.

Ignited by the notion of trailing by a goal, 19 minutes into the second half Liverpool responded squarely from Uruguayan Darwin Nunez’s trickery to cancel the 27-year-old Serbian opener for the Cottagers.

Unfortunately, the Reds could not capitalize on Nunez’s first Premier League goal for the club as the blazing Mitrović footwalk got the worse of Virgil van Dijk, who miss-timed his tackle to cause a penalty, which the Fulham striker slotted on the right-hand side to beat Alison Becker at goal.

However, the Reds had to maximize their potential to render the game to parity and possibly steal a late victory from Craven Cottage but the Cottagers were determined to frustrate their efforts.

Fortunately, Liverpool finally got its opportunity in the 80th minute after a series of trials as star forward and last season’s joint top scorer Mohamed Salah equalized to steal a point home.

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Meanwhile, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has blamed the pitch dryness as the cause for the surreal result at Craven Cottage.

He said, “We got a point from a really bad game from my side so now it’s a question of ‘How can that happen?’

“The attitude was not right in the beginning and then we wanted to fight back but it wasn’t easy anymore.

“The pitch was dry, stuff like this, we played really in their cards most of the time,” Klopp claimed.

Liverpool’s next fixture is against Crystal Palace on Monday, August 15 at Anfield while Fulham travel to Molineux Stadium to take on Wolves on Saturday, 13 August.

Remarkably, Mitrović is the first player to score a brace in the 2022-2023 Premier League season.

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