Liverpool came from behind to beat Preston North End 2-1 at Deepdale, with young star Jordan Ibe impressing for the Reds.
Josh Brownhill’s 45th minute goal gave the League 1 side a half time lead, but a flurry of substitutes disrupted their play and allowed the Premier League side back into the game.
Ibe’s fantastic runs allowed Suso and Kristoffer Petersen to get goals and send Liverpool off on their pre-season tour of USA with a win in this Shankly Shield match.
Preston made the better start and Joe Garner tested the fingers of Liverpool goalkeeper Brad Jones after turning Andre Wisdom and firing in a right-footed shot. Then, Neil Kilkenny went close with a deflected shot that flew inches wide of the goal.
The pressure kept coming and Allan Browne’s long range effort was well saved by Jones, before Brownhill should have put Preston ahead when his free header went wide from six yards out.
New signing Emre Can went off with a calf strain for Liverpool, which is a worry for Brendan Rodgers.
Liverpool came back into the game and new signing Rickie Lambert’s first time effort was brilliantly saved by Jamie Jones, after a deflection from David Buchanen.
Garner came close again when Phillipe Coutinho slips in the midfield, but Jones stood tall to keep him out again. A minute later, Lambert layed a pass off to substitute Ibe, but the youngster blazed over from 8 yards out.
It was right before the half-time whistle that the opening goal came. A Preston corner was accidently flicked on by Martin Skrtel, and Garner spectacularly hit an overhead kick from 4 yards out. That was well saved by Jones, but the ball fell to Brownhill, and the tap-in gave Preston the lead.
Preston made eleven changes at half time and it really affected the game. Liverpool started brightly and Suso, a Reds’ substitute, sliced a shot wide from 20 yards out. On the hour mark, the game really picked up.
Firstly, Suso tested substitute goalkeeper Thomas Stuckmann before Ibe’s shot was deflected inches wide, after a great turn. Ibe kept impressing, and his run through the middle of the park allowed the ball to fall to Suso, who cut inside on his left foot and bent the ball into the far corner to equalise with a fantastic goal.
Three minutes after that goal, Liverpool took the lead. Ibe, again, made the goal as his clever dribble on the left took him to the byline, before his pull back was swept into the net by Peterson.
Ibe nearly scored himself when his cross seemed destined to land in the back of the net, but Stuckmann pulled out a fantastic save. It was an important game for Liverpool, and their journey to the start of season picked up pace.
Preston starting XI: Jones; Woods, Clarke, Wright, Buchanan; Kilkenny, Browne; Gallagher, Brownhill, Hayhurst; Garner
Preston second half: Stuckmann, Wiseman, king, Huntington, B Davies, Humphrey, Welsh (C), Keane, Laird, K Davies, Little
Subs: James, Anderton, Byrom, Hugill
Liverpool starting XI: Jones; Wisdom, Kelly, Skrtel, Flanagan; Lucas, Allen, Can, Coutinho; Lambert, Borini
Subs: Ward, Smith, Enrique, Coady, Coates, Phillips, Robinson, Stewart, L Jones, Peterson, Suso, Rossiter, Ibe, Adorjan
Referee: J Simpson