Erik Meijer and Luis Garcia scored either side of half-time as Liverpool FC Legends lost 3-2 to their Borussia Dortmund counterparts in an end-to-end match at Signal Iduna Park on Saturday.
Dutch striker Meijer poked in from close range to cancel out Stephane Chapuisat's opener from the penalty spot, and Spanish forward Garcia rounded the goalkeeper to level Mladen Petric's strike after the break.
The pair also went close in the final moments, but Marcio Amoroso's 55th-minute goal was enough for the newly-formed BVB Legends to secure victory in their inaugural game.
Liverpool were extended a special invitation to the occasion as the two clubs share a bond through Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp, who led the Bundesliga side for seven years before his switch to Anfield, and also through the anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone.
And after the rousing rendition of the famous song by Dortmund's 'Yellow Wall', it was the hosts who took control early on, carving out a chance for former LFC striker Karl-Heinz Riedle, who headed wide from Lars Ricken's cross after just two minutes.
The Reds responded as the spritely Garcia split the Dortmund defence, only to be denied by 54-year-old goalkeeper Teddy de Beer.
The hosts took the lead after eight minutes when Chapuisat, a Champions League winner with Dortmund in 1997, rolled back the years to draw a foul from Jason McAteer and dusted himself down to beat Liverpool's own European Cup winner Jerzy Dudek from the spot.
Ricken then saw an effort come back off the post as the hosts looked to press home their advantage, but Liverpool levelled on 18 minutes through Meijer, who outmuscled Petric to prod home from a yard out.
The Dutch striker immediately made way for Liverpool's record goalscorer, Ian Rush, as the player-manager brought himself on as one of the rolling substitutions that are a familiar feature of Legends games.
Less familiar, however, was the sight of erstwhile striker Robbie Fowler orchestrating things as Liverpool's midfield general.
The Reds continued to rally and went close through Garcia before Petric restored Dortmund's lead with a powerful left-footed shot on 23 minutes. The Croatian midfielder took possession on the left of the box and flashed a low strike past Dudek into the far corner.
Fowler was restored to his usual advanced role for the second of the 30-minute halves at Signal Iduna Park and his impact in the final third was almost immediate.
The No.9's first-time through ball set Garcia racing clear of the defence but the Spaniard was again denied by the goalkeeper, this time substitute Dennis Gentenaar, in a one-on-one.
BVB striker Mohamed Zidan, who worked under Klopp at Dortmund before joining Mainz in 2012, had the home fans off their seats with a wonderful curling effort that struck the junction of crossbar and post, but it was the Reds who were next to find the net.
Midfielder Patrik Berger, who won the Bundesliga with Dortmund before moving to Anfield in 1996, found Garcia and this time Liverpool's dangerman rounded Gentenaar before rolling the ball into the back of the net to make it 2-2 after 40 minutes.
The tempo remained surprisingly high as the competitive nature of both sets of Legends saw them push for a winner. Ewerthon put a lofted shot just past the post for BVB, while Fowler fired a left-footed effort inches wide of the upright for the Reds.
Dortmund featured six former Brazil internationals in their squad and two of them, Dede and Amoroso, combined to give their side the lead with five minutes to go. Left-back Dede crossed low for his countryman to guide the ball home from 12 yards out.
Garcia had a chance to snatch a draw with the last kick of the game but Dortmund's third goalkeeper of the day, Roman Weidenfeller, made the save.
You can watch the match at 10pm BST tonight on LFCTV, with highlights on LFCTV GO.
Liverpool FC Legends: Dudek, McAteer, Kvarme, Biscan, Babb, Diao, Fowler, Berger, Garcia, Meijer, Smicer.
Subs: Rush, S Gillespie, Aldridge, Walsh, Kennedy, Westerveld, Nicholas
BVB Legends: De Beer, Evanilson, Julio Cesar, Dede, Stevic, Riedle, Lambert, Ricken, Petric, Ewerthon, Chapuisat.
Subs: Gentenaar, Reinhardt, Kringe, Tinga, Koller, Zidan, Heinrich, Kirch, Amoroso, Odonkor, Owomoyela, Weidenfeller.