Liverpool's new vice-captain James Milner insists that the scrappy nature of the weekend's opening day win and sub-standard performance against Stoke aren't really important at this stage of the season as the many new faces settle in.

"If we played rubbish every game of the season and won every one of them, then everybody would be happy with that," Milner explained to the media.

Milner was one of five Liverpool players who made their official debuts over the course of the 90 minutes at the Britannia Stadium - infamously the scene of a devastating 6-1 humiliation less than three months ago - and feels it is only natural to wait for things to click.

"I think it takes time for players to gel and there has been a lot of new arrivals, not just on the pitch but in the coaching staff, too," the 29-year-old went on to say.

"There is a lot of quality there (in the squad), a lot of younger guys, so there are going to be games when we have ups and downs but that is football. It is going to be like that all season."

A single long-range strike from Philippe Coutinho proved to be the crucial difference in what was a hard fought game against a well drilled Stoke side.

Milner added, "Ultimately, it is about getting that win whether it is a game where we can move the ball about or whether it is a game where it is a battle and we have to grind it out.

"You have to assess the situation and be able to adapt and play in different formations against different sides. It is a top team that can adapt and win games when things maybe aren't playing to your strengths."

Liverpool's first home game of the new season will see Eddie Howe's plucky Bournemouth make the trip north to Anfield on Monday night.