Liverpool’s pre-season tour of the US got off to a poor start as they fell to a 1-0 defeat to Antonio’s Conte’s Chelsea.
Jurgen Klopp had previously overseen four victories on home soil, as the Reds dispatched of Tranmere Rovers, Fleetwood Town, Wigan Athletic and Huddersfield Town before flying to California.
Their time across the Atlantic sees them take in two International Champions Cup clashes and a further friendly.
The first of their outings in the lucrative pre-season tournament came on Thursday morning, facing off against the Blues at the stunning Rose Bowl in Pasadena.
This came in front of a remarkable crowd, with Liverpool’s strong following in the US shining through.
It provided Klopp with his first taste of top-level competition this summer, as he mounts up the pressure on his side in preparation for a renewed challenge in 2016/17.
Despite a reasonable start, however, the German was left disappointed just 11 minutes in.
After Chelsea won a corner early in the first half, England international centre-back Gary Cahill was there to rise highest, latching onto a lapse in judgment from Firmino and dominating Marko Grujic in the air to power a header past Loris Karius.
Chelsea spent much of the clash defending deep, leaving Firmino and his attacking cohorts struggling to break through to test goalkeeper Asmir Begovic.
Henderson nipped the ball around nicely and Ings provided some intelligent movement in the final third, but the Reds were still lacking, as the contest descended into a series of wild challenges from either side.
The worst came from Chelsea’s Cesc Fabregas, who lunged in late on debutant Ragnar Klavan, receiving a straight red card.
Moreno came under considerable criticism after the game, with his 82 minutes on the field peppered with hallmarks of his defensive ineptitude that will continue to trouble supporters.
This is very much a Liverpool side still getting to grips with their fitness and structure this pre-season, however, and despite defeat in their opening ICC fixture, they can be content with another testing exercise.
- MATCH REPORT: Pre-season defeat for Reds in California