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Jurgen Klopp's Roberto Firmino decision proves Liverpool's Premier League ambition is clear

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But perhaps the most significant thing to be taken from his decision to rest Roberto Firmino in particular, was that the Premier League is clearly the target this season.

Even as that irrepressible flash of pure joy spread across Jurgen Klopp’s face as he briefly held the Super Cup trophy, there was surely a hint of relief too.

The Liverpool manager knew he had taken a gamble in this game - and one that had so nearly backfired on him, as Chelsea provided more stern, and coherent, opposition that he could ever have imagined.



Without Firmino to work off, Salah and Mane look more restricted.

The Premier League isn’t just a priority, but a holy grail, perhaps that was always the case after 30 years without the trophy.

It was clear in his demeanour - and his team selection here - he was not happy about the distance his side had to travel for this final, especially against an English side, and unhappy too, at the scheduling.

It meant they provided a real threat throughout the tense extremes of this pulsating final, their intent on the break at times overshadowing the threat of Liverpool’s own revered front three.
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