Milner hails Naby Keita: "Imagine how good he's going to be..."

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - AUGUST 12: Manuel Pellegrini, Manager of West Ham United looks on prior to the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and West Ham United at Anfield on August 12, 2018 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

Lat season's Premier League top scorer Mo Salah also starts up front for the Reds.

Sadio Mane netted in first-half stoppage time and eight minutes after the break. Then, in the 88th, oft-injured striker Daniel Sturridge bundled in one more for good measure with his first touch of the game, less than a half-minute after taking the field as a substitute.

Mane and Salah in particular have been able to tuck in and occupy the West Ham's backline allowing Liverpool's fullbacks to overlap. The Hammers had just five shots, including two on frame, while seeing the ball just 35 percent of the time.

Keita started the move for Liverpool's opener and possessed the pace and skill to consistently drove through the heart of West Ham's pedestrian midfield.

Roberto Pereyra is, like many of Watford's squad, one of those players who you can forget about until he does something spectacular.

Worryingly for the rest of the chasing pack, this Liverpool side is not the finished product.

It should come as no surprise that the Reds look so good so early. I think he can regain the ball, his counterpressing is good.

So often outgunned by the oil wealth of Abu Dhabi backed City or commercial giants Manchester United in recent years, Liverpool were the biggest spenders from the world's richest league this summer with a reported £170 million (US$217 million) splurge in the transfer market. Why use the first few games of the new campaign to get going, when you can do that in the games that don't count?

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola admits that he sometimes "wants to kill" left-back Benjamin Mendy and has urged the French star to cut down on his social media usage. Last season Liverpool had some great Anfield nights but also failed to beat Burnley, West Brom (twice) and Stoke at home. But progress isn't enough anymore.

Being bested by Crystal Palace, by some way not the best side in the Premier League but essentially gnarly veterans of the division, will perhaps provide a timely reminder for Fulham that they shouldn't get carried away just because they've signed a group of good players.

Klopp's men will be tough to stop at Anfield this season, the way it should be for title challengers.

A key feature of Liverpool's run to the Champions League final was the prominence of Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold on opposing flanks.

  • Angelo Rivera