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It’s Nunez 1 Haaland 0 – but the bigger battles are still to come in Liverpool v Man City showdown

I know people put the Community Shield game down as a pre-season friendly – and when you lose it, it is of course convenient to see it in that light.
Darwin Nunez scores for Liverpool

Darwin Nunez scores for Liverpool© Getty Images

John AldridgeSunday World

Liverpool’s 3-1 win against Manchester City in the Community Shield game won’t count for too much when the Premier League title race gets underway next weekend.

Yet when you look at the impact Darwin Nunez had for Liverpool after he came off the bench and compare it to Haaland’s evening... well there was only one winner.

I have no doubt that Haaland will score lots of goals for City, because everything we have seen from this powerhouse Norwegian striker suggests he will be a potent force in the Premier League.

However, his late miss when the game had already been won by Liverpool will be etched into his mind for the next few days. It was a bad one.

I know people put the Community Shield game down as a pre-season friendly – and when you lose it, it is of course convenient to see it in that light.

Yet I am very proud of the two medals I won in this game during my time at Liverpool, and Jurgen Klopp’s players have every right to celebrate yesterday’s 3-1 win against Manchester City.

20 May 1989 - FA Cup Final - Liverpool v Everton - John Aldridge and John Barnes celebrate the opening Liverpool goal together. (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

20 May 1989 - FA Cup Final - Liverpool v Everton - John Aldridge and John Barnes celebrate the opening Liverpool goal together. (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)© Getty Images

City claimed a couple of years ago that they won a quadruple and tried to include the match now known as the Community Shield in that – and while it isn’t a trophy to shout about, winning against your biggest rival is never a bad thing.

You could see the frustration on Pep Guardiola’s face on the touchline when Liverpool were 1-0 ahead. He hated the idea of losing to Jurgen Klopp again.

The Liverpool manager has a great record against one of the game’s finest winners and he added to that record with this latest win in the Community Shield.

What Saturday’s game confirmed is Liverpool and City will be the teams to beat this season as they are the class of the field in English football.

Some of the passing and movement in this latest encounter was top class and I have to say, Liverpool look a little sharper than City in the crucial moments.

I explain in my Sunday World column this week that Nunez will need time to get used to Liverpool, but he made a good start in the Community Shield and will want to hit the ground running when the real stuff gets underway next weekend.

City will lick their wounds and come back with all guns blazing.


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