Senegalese forward Sadio Mane was on target as Liverpool overcame struggling Aston Villa 2-0 at Anfield on Sunday.
Liverpool, who were coming off a 4-0 defeat in their first game as Premier League champions, looked unrecognizable despite dominating possession and having slightly more attempts on goal than the visitors.
After a goalless first half, Villa nearly took the lead but Alisson did well to save an effort by Anwar El Ghazi.
Guinean midfielder Naby Keita then did well to find Mane in the penalty box and the Senegalese swept the ball into the net in off the underside of the crossbar in the 71st minute.
Mane’s goal was Liverpool’s first as league champions after they drew a blank against their predecessors Manchester City at Etihad Stadium. That goal also meant that Mane had now scored 20 goals in competitions for a third successive season.
Egyptian winger Mohamed Salah then set up Curtis Jones to score his first in the Premier League in the 89th minute. Salah’s assist, his 27th, was his 100th Premier League goal involvement in just his 116th game. Only the league’s all-time top scorer Alan Shearer took fewer games (100) to reach this milestone.
The win saw Liverpool extend their unbeaten home run in the league to 57 matches in which they have won 47 times and drawn 10 times.
The champions are next in action on Wednesday away to Brighton at the Amex Stadium with some records still within sight.