James Milner was given a hilarious reception by a fan in Starbucks on Saturday, after the initial Liverpool squad returned to pre-season training at Melwood.
Jurgen Klopp met a 16-strong group at the club’s training ground on the first day of pre-season, with the remainder of his side expected back later in the summer.
Youngsters such as Rhian Brewster and Curtis Jones joined new signing Sepp van den Berg and experienced heads including Milner, Joel Matip, Adam Lallana, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Nathaniel Clyne for fitness tests.
The No. 7 led the way in the lactate test, closely followed by Joe Gomez, as his phenomenal conditioning shone through once again.
Split into three groups, Liverpool were put through their paces on the outdoor pitch, and though the start of pre-season is far from the most enjoyable stage of the campaign, the squad took to social media to mark their enjoyable return.
Nat Phillips, Ki-Jana Hoever, Harry Wilson and Jones were all happy to be back, with the young quartet all vying for a role Klopp’s squad in 2019/20.
The face you make when your back with!! @LFC ?? pic.twitter.com/pRAgdx7LT4
— Curtis Jones (@curtisjr_10) 6 July 2019
For Van den Berg, it was an opportunity to meet his new team-mates for the first time, and the 17-year-old is hoping to “make it a good one” as he joins the senior setup following his £1.3 million move from PEC Zwolle.
Gomez made an early return despite being part of the England squad in the UEFA Nations League, heading back before Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson in a bid to make up for lost time.
The 22-year-old looks in excellent shape, and will be competing with Matip for a starting spot alongside Virgil van Dijk this season.
Milner, Lallana and Fabinho were raring to go after a short break, with the midfield trio all candidates to start against Tranmere on Thursday night.
Meanwhile, Brewster has been backed to take up an “important role” this season by Klopp, with the manager describing the teenager as a really big talent” on Saturday.
For Oxlade-Chamberlain, however, the end of a relaxing summer brings his least-favourite part of pre-season, with the squad not touching a football on Saturday.
The highlight of day one came after the Reds’ time at Melwood, though, as Lallana shared a fan’s reaction to meeting Milner as they visited Starbucks.
It’s not every day a European champion orders an iced Ribena at your work!