It’s been a busy pre-season off and on the field for Liverpool.
We take a look at the winners and losers.
More often than not Liverpool’s Sporting Director Michael Edwards is working behind the scenes, but so successful has been the Red’s transfer business this pre-season that the 39-year-old has been thrust into the lime-light.
Edwards was appointed to this newly-created role back in November 2016.
Owners Fenway Sports Group had wanted a sporting director in place as early as 2012 but Brendan Rodgers’ arrival as manager saw the plans scrapped until Jurgen Klopp took over in 2015.
The German worked with a similar structure successfully while at Borussia Dortmund.
Edwards is believed to have played a big role in bringing Fabinho, Naby Keita, Alisson and Xherdan Shaqiri to the club with the only black mark the non-arrival of Nabil Fekir.
But all in a fantastic summer for the former Peterborough video analyst.
Just when everyone was getting ready to put a line through the striker, the 28-year-old has been re-born with some outstanding performances in pre-season and a re-discovered positive attitude.
He has immediately struck up an excellent understanding with new arrivals Shaqiri and Keita both playing the role of scorer and provider.
Liverpool fans were disappointed when Nabil Fekir did not arrive over the summer but Sturridge in current form could well slot into that No10 role as well as provide excellent back up for the front three of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane.
The only question mark is can the injury prone front man stay fit – if he can the Sturridge 2.0 could be a huge boost in 2018/19.
Little was known about the 17-year-old Scouser prior to the summer but along with Sturridge he has been a clear pre-season winner.
The tall, elegant mid-fielder has impressed all with his performances in Liverpool’s pre-season campaign, whether it was against Chester at the humble Deva Stadium or Manchester United in front over 100,000 in Detroit.
His calm and composed performance in the 5-0 hammering of Napoli was the icing on the cake.
A talented midfield player with an eye for a pass and a keen eye for goal, versatility is one of of his many attributes as he can play anywhere across middle.
So good has Jones been that he will be fighting for a spot on the bench for the first team right from the start of the season.
The England-man is a popular figure at Liverpool, known for his tireless work-rate and his touches in front of goal.
But with the arrival of so much talent over the summer it’s hard seeing the 30-year-old play much part this season.
Lallana was already stretched to be pushing for a starting spot but now with the arrival of Keita and Shaqiri and the re-birth of Sturridge and emergence of Jones, Lallana could easily be squeezed out of the match day squad entirely.
Looking at the Liverpool midfield options, they are probably headlined by Keita, James Milner and Gini Wijnaldum at season start with the returning Jordan Henderson, Fabinho, Shaqiri and Jones as ready back up.
This leaves Lallana on the outer and possibly looking for a new club come January.
The young German (non-)stopper is much discussed by Reds fans – with equal measures of derision and support.
He surprisingly found himself elevated ahead of the more experienced Simon Mignolet last season and a few good performances were then un-done by his horror evening in the Champions League final, where his two glaring errors were the difference between the teams.
Since then he has issued a teary apology to fans, recorded an odd promotional video while on holiday in LA and shown he is still well and truly afflicted by the goal-keeping yips after gifting a goal to lowly Tranmere.
Whether it was that moment that forced Liverpool’s hand to finally bring in another keeper or the arrival of Alisson was due to a confluence of other factors is yet to be revealed.
But either way the Brazilian’s arrival – and impressive debut against Napoli – show that the 25-year-old has already settled in well on Merseyside.
Karius is now well and truly consigned to a bench role with only the League Cup to look forward to or perhaps he may even be on the move sooner rather than later.
Klopp gave him every chance but enough is enough.
It has been 28 long years since the Reds won the top division in English football – back then the Premier League didn’t even exist.
But with Liverpool’s impressive run last year and the strengthening exactly where it needed to happen – in goal, defence and midfield – you would have to say Liverpool are ready for a title challenge.
They beat Manchester City (2-1), Manchester United (4-1) and absolutely destroyed Napoli (5-0) in pre-season and played some fast paced, highly skilled football.
Apart from Henderson and Dejan Lovren the whole squad will be ready to go from day one of the opening season and new arrivals Keita, Fabinho, Shaqiri and Alisson are desperate to make their mark.
However, this is Liverpool and something could still go spectacularly wrong but at this point in time they look best placed to threaten Manchester City for the title.
Spurs have done nothing in the transfer market and have been hit hardest by the World Cup, United are in a Jose Mourinho inflicted doldrums and Chelsea and Arsenal are re-building with new coaches.
This leaves Klopp’s Reds the strongest challenger to Pep’s sky blues.
No more excuses – this year Liverpool must give it a real go.