Aug 17 (Reuters) - Goals to Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge helped Liverpool begin the post-Luis Suarez era with a 2-1 victory over a new-look Southampton at Anfield on Sunday.
Sterling, one of a number of Liverpool players to enhance their reputation last season, gave the hosts the lead midway through the first half after a fine pass from England team mate Jordan Henderson.
A thunderous shot from Nathaniel Clyne drew the visitors level shortly after the break, before Sturridge scored the winner with just over 10 minutes remaining.
Suarez’s 31 goals helped Liverpool to second place in the Premier League last season, but the controversial Uruguayan was sold to Barcelona after receiving a four-month ban for biting during the World Cup.
His sale helped fund around 100 million pounds ($166.95 million) of new arrivals, but Brendan Rodgers’ side largely failed to hit the thrilling heights of last term in their first league outing.
Southampton, themselves embarking on a new period under the guidance of Dutchman Ronald Koeman and after the departures of a number of key names, gave a decent account of themselves in what is expected to be a season of rebuilding.
Newcastle host champions Manchester City in Sunday’s second match.
$1 = 0.5990 British Pounds Reporting by Josh Reich, editing by Pritha Sarkar