Brazil goalkeeper Alisson has declared he is feeling “100-per-cent fit” and raring to go for the myriad challenges ahead with Liverpool.
Alisson, 27, was kept reasonably busy by a number of pot-shots from Son Heung-min in Tuesday’s 3-0 victory against South Korea in Abu Dhabi. This friendly represented an eighth appearance – and first clean sheet – since August’s calf injury.
When quizzed at Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium about his condition ahead of the hectic winter stretch in England, the €62.5 million signing from Roma replied: “Yeah, I feel 100 per cent fit.
“I was just needing the continuity of playing and I have this now.”
Alisson will next be in-between the sticks for the runaway Premier League leaders in Saturday’s visit to Crystal Palace.
This result at international level, however, provided welcome respite. The Selecao had gone winless in five fixtures since their triumph, on home soil, at the Copa America. This run also included last week’s 1-0 loss to Argentina in Riyadh, inflicted by Barcelona icon Lionel Messi’s early penalty shortly after Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus erred from 12 yards at the opposite end.
“We were needing a victory to put us in a good place because we are coming from five bad results – drawing and a loss against Argentina,” said Alisson, winning a 44th cap for Brazil. “That sometimes puts you in a difficult situation.
“In this game, we did very well. We did everything that the manager asked us to do on the pitch.
“We put everything to win this game and give us confidence for the rest of the season.”
Meanwhile, coach Paulo Bento admitted his Taegeuk Warriors cracked under the pressure of facing a nation vastly superior – even without injured Neymar – to those found on the Asian circuit.
This reality check followed successive goalless World Cup 2022 qualifying stalemates versus North Korea and Lebanon.
“A game in a different context than we played before,” said Bento, who oversaw quarter-final defeat at the 2019 Asian Cup.
“In the qualifiers to the World Cup, the idea is the same. But the opponents are different and have different strategies.
“We faced the best team until now and I think that we followed our ideas. This was essentially about our offensive process, where we played really well and with strong personality.
“Anyway, we made some defensive mistakes and we paid a high price because for that. As a conclusion, the game was good for us and it is important to play as we played.”
Korea will next take a domestic side to December’s EAFF Championship.
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