This wasn’t quite the reinvention of Liverpool that Jurgen Klopp had hoped for. In fact, it could indeed have been a dangerous defeat had Ajax not passed their sporadic chances in the second half. But the Liverpool manager couldn’t hide his delight after the 2- 1 victory at Anfield thanks to Joel Matip’s late header.
And with good reason. This was huge. One point from two Champions League games going into a double- header against Rangers would have been fraught with hardship. Now there’s some relief, some optimism, and perhaps something to build the season on.
The atmosphere had been a little restrained in the early part of the game but it reached a crescendo in the ending moments and that was a credit to Liverpool’s ambition. Klopp threw on the attacking substitutes and was awarded with the winning goal.
It wasn’t a substitute who scored the goal but Liverpool’s depth did make a difference and they will hope to have further players fit and fresh following the international break. The rhythm isn’t relatively there yet but that goal still felt like a big moment in their season.