Liverpool uncovering gems among the best of top-flight pre-season

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The preparation for the new Premier League season is well and truly underway and with social media an increasingly integral part of a football club’s existence, it’s never been easier for fans to follow every step of the journey.

Here’s the best of the recent updates from around the top flight:

Obviously the biggest part of pre-season is buying new players, but once they’ve arrived there’s just as much interest in seeing how those players bed in. Luckily for Southampton, new striker Graziano Pelle seems to have adapted quickly to red and white stripes, scoring twice for the Saints on his debut in Belgium:

It’s not just new signings who can use pre-season friendlies to catch the eye, as a club’s youth players tend to get a fairer crack of the whip than when the season’s competition is at its height.

Liverpool have already benefited from bringing Raheem Sterling into the first team and, if the below video is anything to go by, may have found another gem in Jordan Ibe, who excelled in the recent 2-1 defeat to Brondby:

For some clubs though, there isn’t a better time to acclimatise to a new manager’s ideals than during the summer. With Louis van Gaal in charge, a man notoriously set in his ways when it comes to playing style, Man Utd are seemingly going to need all the time they can get and, following a brief introduction from Ryan Giggs, the Red Devils got straight to work with their new boss.

Goalkeepers love training don’t they? It’s the only time they can really get to act like actual footballers and Kasper Schmeichel is no different, celebrating this overhead kick wildly in Leicester’s pre-season. They could need one of those if they want to avoid relegation, rated at 21/10 by Ladbrokes.

While keepers play strikers on the pitch, other players are yet to return to action having taken part in the World Cup. Unsurprisingly, cigarette-loving Jack Wilshere is one of them…

Jack-Wilshere-18-7-14

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.