Coutinho wonder strike helps Liverpool sink Stoke

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 Philippe Coutinho,Liverpool,Brendan Rodgers,Stoke City,

Photo: Philippe Coutinho unleashes a thunderbolt that hands Liverpool a season opening win at the Britannia Stadium on Sunday. Liverpool defeated Stoke City in the late Barclays Premier League.

An 86th minute wonder strike from Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho was enough to hand Liverpool all three points against Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium on Sunday. The Mersyside team got their new premier league campaign off to a good start, while they exacted revenge for the humiliating defeat to the Potters on the last day of last season when they were flogged 6-1.

Liverpool manager, Brendan Rodgers was under a lot of pressure after a failed campaign last season and having spent heavily in the summer, including bringing in Belgian striker Christian Benteke. The onus was on the visitors to get a result in a stadium where few teams like to go.

For 85 minutes of a dull encounter it appeared the points would be shared as both teams cancelled out each other in a nervous season opener. However, Coutinho would put his names up in lights when he broke through the midfield and cut across the box, before unleashing a thunderbolt that goalkeeper Jack Butland could do nothing about.

The win will come as a relief to Rodgers following Liverpool’s sixth place finish last season after they finished runners up the season before.

Mark Hughes would be disappointed to lose to such a late goal but not overly worried as his team matched the big spenders stride for stride for most of the game.