FOOTBALL: Liverpool's attacking problems were evident at Anfield as economic Arsenal took all three points from a low-key contest.
Goals from new-boys Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla broke the Gunners' duck for the season, taking advantage of their profligate hosts.
The effect of a frustrating final day in the transfer market was clear to see for the Reds who lacked options on the bench to freshen up their sluggish attack, but Brendan Rogers, who admitted that he would not have let Andy Carroll depart had he known a replacement would not be arriving, put on a brave face after his deadline day disappointment.
"There's no doubt the finances here had to be changed, that was the reality, but there's nothing we can do about it. We've lost nearly nine players and brought in three, so from a business side the club have done well, and what we need to do now for the future is look after the football business.
"It's gone. We'll move on. We've got a lot of young players who will get an opportunity. That's where we're at, and I'm not here to cry. I'm proud to manage this club, and I'm going to fight to keep us moving forward.
After a dull first half-hour in which neither side showed much attacking intent, a textbook counter-atack finally ended the tedium as Podolski netted his first for the club. Steven Gerrard's loose pass on the edge of the Arsenal box was snapped up by the German, who sent Cazorla free in the middle and raced beyond Glen Johnson for the return ball, slotting past Pepe Reina from a tight angle.
Liverpool huffed and puffed at the start of the second half and can feel aggrieved that Luis Suarez's penalty claim was rejected after the Uruguayan went down under pressure from Per Mertesacker. Substitute Stewart Downing and Suarez both saw shots blocked by the Arsenal back line, before Cazorla and Podolski again combined to seal the win.
The sprightly Spaniard picked up a ball from the peerless Abou Diaby and embarked on a mazy run towards the Anfield Road end, playing a neat give-and-go with Arsenal's new number nine before rifling his first goal for the Gunners under Reina.
With no striker on the Liverpool bench, Brendan Rodgers failed to come up with a solution to his toothless forward line, though Vito Mannone stood firm to deny Jonjo Shelvey's two late efforts.