Jurgen Klopp admits Rovers gave his Liverpool side a ‘real challenge’ in the friendly at Ewood Park.

Second half goals from Lazar Markovic and Daniel Sturridge proved the difference for the Premier League side in a 2-0 victory.

But for the opening hour, Rovers more than held their own in a game that was played at a decent tempo.

Liverpool’s class, and quality in reserve, told in the end as they bossed the final half an hour in a game Klopp felt was ‘very intense’.

He said: “A good game. It was a real challenge and playing against a Championship team in pre-season is I think the biggest challenge you can face because they have the quality and the desire to show they are not much worse and that’s what Blackburn did.

“We had a few problems in the first half pretty much only because we caused them ourselves.

“You always see in pre-season the players react differently individually, a few have fresher legs than others.

“We had the chances in the first half, we missed a penalty and we had good moments in the box, and could have been 2-0 or 3-0 up already.

“We could have conceded one because Loris (Karius) had to make two or three good saves.

“The second half was more fluent. The boys changed positions and it wasn’t as hectic as the first half so it was a little bit calmer.

“That helped a lot, so a very deserved 2-0 win. A very good game for us, 45 minutes (for the players) again, very intense.”

The half-time introduction of Nabi Keita helped swing the game in the visitors’ favour. The £50m summer signing showed his class, claiming an assist for Sturridge’s second goal and put in an all-action performance.

Of his summer recruit, Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com: “Good player, that’s true.

“In this moment he looks very natural in the position, which is good but we have of course still to work on it, that’s how it is, but it’s all good so far.

“Fabinho I think played his best game since he came here now.

“He needed time to settle and it looked much more natural with him in that position, so that was good.

“That’s how football should look and enjoy it.

“They need organisation and second half we were better because we didn’t lose easy balls, and we had a few of them in the first half.”