Liverpool will once again kick off another Premier League season against a newly-promoted side, as Fulham play host to the Reds at Craven Cottage on Saturday.
Jurgen Klopp‘s men were forced to accept second best again last season, while the Cottagers are aiming to avoid a swift demotion back down to the second tier.
With 90 points and 106 goals – 43 of which came from Aleksandar Mitrovic – to boast from the 2021-22 Championship season, Fulham blew the competition out of the water to return to the big time, although winning just two of their final seven matches took some gloss off of their trophy.
Bringing in Joao Palhinha from Sporting Lisbon was an impressive coup indeed – the pull of the Premier League played its role to the maximum in that one – and Silva has also welcomed Manor Solomon, Kevin Mbabu, Bernd Leno and Andreas Pereira to Craven Cottage this summer.
Beating Nice and Estoril and holding Villarreal to a score draw in pre-season has set Fulham up well to try to secure survival this time around, although Benfica put five past them in pre-season, and they have lost all five of their opening-day top-flight encounters the season after their promotion.
During their abysmal end to a doomed 2020-21 season, Fulham failed to pick up any victories in their final 10 games of the campaign – losing eight and drawing two – but Liverpool fans will not want to hear who their most recent Premier League victory came against.
Completing the FA Cup and EFL Cup double is nothing to be sniffed at, but for a good chunk of the 2021-22 season, Liverpool seemed capable of turning the unprecedented quadruple dream into a reality before Real Madrid and Manchester City did the business.
Failing to add another Champions League or Premier League trophy to their brimming Anfield cabinet did dampen the mood slightly, especially seeing as Reds legend Steven Gerrard threatened the shock of all final-day shocks with his Aston Villa side against Man City before Pep Guardiola‘s side came storming back.
Fulham’s most recent Premier League win was a 1-0 success over Liverpool at Anfield in 2021, and they also held the Reds to a draw at Craven Cottage that same year, but Liverpool are going in search of their fifth opening-day win with at least three goals scored in succession this weekend.
Fulham possible starting lineup:
Leno; Mbabu, Adarabioyo, Ream, Robinson; Palhinha, Reed; Reid, Pereira, Kebano; Mitrovic
Liverpool possible starting lineup:
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Thiago; Salah, Firmino, Diaz