Andy Robertson reflected on his impressive Anfield debut for Liverpool by labelling the experience 'different class'.
The left-back, a summer signing from Hull City, made his first competitive appearance for the Reds on Saturday and put in an eye-catching display to help earn a 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace.
After being omitted from Jürgen Klopp’s matchday squad for last weekend’s Premier League opener at Watford and Tuesday’s Champions League qualifying play-off first-leg win over Hoffenheim, Robertson was delighted to be included against the Eagles.
Robertson repaid the faith shown in him by the manager - who praised the No.26’s performance in his post-match press conference - and joined the Reds’ match-winner Sadio Mane to speak exclusively to Liverpoolfc.com after the game.
“It was great. When I got told I was getting the nod and then you start thinking about playing at Anfield and in front of the fans - you can’t quite imagine it until you’re out there but it was different class,” the Scotland international said.
“At times they were frustrated but so were we and it was important we stuck together, which we did.
“This man [Mane] popped up with a goal when we needed him most and then I thought we were quite comfortable after that with the clean sheet and keeping the ball. That’s what we can do and luckily we managed to see it out and get the three points and a clean sheet.”
LFCTV GO: Robertson and Mane speak after Palace win
Robertson’s inclusion on Saturday was one of three defensive changes made by Klopp, with Joe Gomez and Ragnar Klavan also starting.
And the 23-year-old believes the boss’ new-look backline dealt well with the imposing physical threat provided by former Liverpool striker Christian Benteke.
“As soon as we saw their result last weekend, we knew we were going to get a reaction with the new manager,” Robertson explained, in reference to Palace’s 3-0 opening-day defeat to Huddersfield Town.
“They’d have been working at it all week, maybe sitting in deep and going a bit more direct when you’ve got a threat like Benteke, but I thought Raggy and Joel dealt with it brilliantly and defensively I thought we were sound. That’s what we needed.”
Liverpool’s solidity at the back gave the team’s attacking players a platform upon which to go and win the game - which Mane did by reacting quickest to a ricochet in the box to slide past Wayne Hennessey in the 73rd minute.
“It’s brilliant when you get the ball and you look up and you’ve got Sadio, Roberto, Studge in the first half and Mo came on with big Dom - it’s great to have the options,” Robertson noted.
“You know they’re going to make good runs and you know when they get a chance they should put it away and Sadio’s in great form just now, everything he hits seems to go in, so hopefully that continues and everyone else can start pitching in with goals.
“We’re not fully up to speed yet, but we’re getting there and when we are we’ll be a threat.”
Watch: The best of Robertson's Anfield debut