Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp mounted a spirited defence of Sydney FC after the A-League champions were swept aside 3-0 at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday night.
The EPL giants, inspired by club legend Steven Gerrard, notched up all three goals before the break and, had it not been for goalkeeper Danny Vukovic, could have a few more.
Sydney were shorn of some key players including Johnny Warren medallist Milos Ninkovic, Filip Holosko and Jordy Buijs. By game's end it was a very young side on the park.
The jet-lagged visitors were hardly at full strength either, with a mix of first team players, rising young talents and club greats such as Gerrard and Jamie Carragher taking to the pitch.
Still, Klopp bristled at any hint of a suggestion the Sky Blues' should have put on a better show.
"We have a better football team than Sydney FC that should not be a surprise," the German said.
He added: "We’re really thankful that Sydney FC gave us the opportunity two weeks after the end of their season.
"So nobody should talk about them – they missed a lot of players. I think six or seven players were off because they were already at home.
"Sydney FC second team should be better than Liverpool? That is crazy. So we need to win this game.
"Could it be more difficult? Yes, in a different situation. But I’m happy because it was not too hard. And we showed our fans we’re really thankful for their support, that’s why we are here."