Andy Robertson has praised Roberto Firmino for his key role in lifting Liverpool to a come-from-behind 3-1 win over Newcastle United on Saturday.
Brazil forward Firmino stepped off the bench before half-time and provided assists for Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah as the Premier League leaders recovered from an early deficit.
Jurgen Klopp had intended to give the regular starter some rest following his involvement in two Brazil friendlies in the United States during the international break.
But a twisted ankle forced Divock Origi from the pitch in the 37th minute, when the scores were level at 1-1, and proved the catalyst for a stronger Liverpool performance.
“We’re gutted for big Div coming off, hopefully it’s not too serious but he had to come off at that time,” left-back Robertson told his club’s website.
“But to bring Bobby on is always a nice sub to have.
“Obviously he came back late from internationals and the manager decided to put him on the bench.
“When he came on he showed his class and could probably have had three or four assists. He had a big impact and that’s what we needed. Luckily we had enough for the three points.”
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— Liverpool FC (@LFC) September 14, 2019
The victory moved Liverpool five points clear of second-placed Manchester City, who lost 3-2 at Norwich City.
The Reds now turn their attention to this week’s Champions League opener away to Napoli, the first of four games before the end of the month.
“August was relaxed in terms of what we’re used to but September is back to the busy schedule,” Robertson said.
“The Champions League starts on Tuesday and we’ll be on a flight on Monday.
“So it’s all about recovering, we need to recover properly and we need to be ready to go on Tuesday.
“September is a busy period. We need to come through it firing and get the results we need.”