By 90Min
September 17, 2019

Well, that wasn't supposed to happen, was it?

Liverpool, the Champions League holders, faced an admittedly tough opening challenge in their bid to defend their crown, travelling to Stadio San Paolo to face last season's Serie A runners-up Napoli on Tuesday.

The game was a close run thing, with both Alex Meret and Adrian pulling off top saves at various points, but Napoli would eventually pull clear thanks to Dries Mertens' penalty - scored after Andy Robertson was adjudged to have brought down Jose Callejon - and substitute Fernando Llorente's prodded finish following Virgil van Dijk's sloppy pass.

Laurence Griffiths/GettyImages

Yes, I know, Van Dijk doesn't make mistakes, but trust me. I saw it happen. Like, with my eyes and stuff.

Anyway, there was plenty of admiration shared online for stand-in goalkeeper Adrian, who's filled in well for Alisson thus far following the Brazilian's injury on the opening weekend of the Premier League season.

He made two sharp stops early on before unbelievably keeping a Mertens header out, leaping full stretch to his left to paw the ball away from danger.

Liverpool's front three, so menacing at the weekend against Newcastle, struggled on Tuesday night, with Mohamed Salah denied by a flying Meret save, while Sadio Mane was also indecisive when attempting the final pass.

Roberto Firmino didn't do any important no-look passes or delicious little flicks which led to anything majorly important, the Brazilian also enduring a night to forget.

Twitter also made me very aware of Mohamed Salah wrestling his way out of the path of Kalidou Koulibaly, Napoli's giant defender, so here's the pic of the pair going hammer and tongs at each other.

A picture is worth a thousand words, some say. Meh. Good photo though.

However, the main feeling to take away from Liverpool fans' reactions to the defeat on Tuesday was, perhaps somewhat unsurprisingly, disappointment.

Liverpool actually did lose a fair few games in the competition last year, including all three away group stage games, so all's not exactly lost. But try telling that to this pack of jokers.

Disappointing stuff, yes, but it's hardly meltdown material, so let's all just take it easy.

They'll probably end up winning the thing again anyway. Liverpool are really, really good at football, so keep the faiths Reds fans! It'll all be gravy.

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