One of the positive points from yesterday’s 1-0 Stoke City victory was the clean-sheet earned through a solid defensive performance all-round.
Martin Skrtel and Dejan Lovren were composed, but it was the two new signings at fullback who perhaps most impressed.
While £12m England international arrival Nathaniel Clyne was expected to slot in seamlessly, 18-year-old Joe Gomez wasn’t even touted as a first-team squad member following his move from Charlton earlier in the summer.
But the teenager battled Jonathan Walters well, and justified Brendan Rodgers’ decision to deploy him ahead of capped Spaniard Alberto Moreno – who arrived from Sevilla last summer.
Gomez was delighted to be selected and saluted his team-mates for easing his transition into Liverpool life.
“It was a great experience and obviously getting the win at the end made it better,” he told Liverpoolfc.com.
“The last few months, I would never have dreamed that I’d get the opportunity as quickly as I have.
“It’s just thanks to the team and the gaffer for giving me the opportunity to play, but it was a good result for the team and that’s the main thing.
“One of the reasons I wanted to come to Liverpool is because Brendan is such a great manager giving young players opportunities and I’m thankful for that.”
The teenage defender, who’s comfortable anywhere along the back four, went on to praise the spirit within the dressing room – claiming that those who played a part in the 6-1 humiliation last season were desperate to right that infamous wrong.
“It was only used as motivation to come back here and get a result,” he continued.
“I don’t think there was any negativity about looking back at what happened.
“All the boys used it as motivation and it made it that bit more important to try and get the win.”
“There seems to be a great vibe in the changing room and all the boys seem to get on well.
“Everyone wants to do well this season and there’s a real hunger in the team so hopefully we can do good things.”
Gomez’s performance should do enough to keep him in the side versus Bournemouth in a week’s time. Defensively he’s solid, more so perhaps than his rival for the position Moreno.
We’d hope that at home to the newly promoted Cherries we’d be in the driving seat, meaning that Gomez may be able to stretch his legs and make an offensive contribution to the side as well.