Bayer Leverkusen wrapped up their pre-season friendly programme with a 3-1 defeat at Premier League outfit Liverpool FC - the home-from-home of former defensive stalwart Sami Hyypiä, now Leverkusen team manager. Lukas Podolski meanwhile had a far speedier reunion with his former 1. FC Köln colleagues - and promptly helped dispatch them with a brace in Arsenal's 4-0 win.
Liverpool FC 3-1 Bayer 04 Leverkusen
Liverpool got the ball rolling at Anfield with a third-minute opener from 17-year-old prospect Raheem Sterling, making his senior debut for the five-time European champions. Slack marking in the Bayer defence allowed Brazilian Lucas to tap home number two just shy of the half-hour mark.
Defensive lapses cost Bayer
Andy Carroll gave a fairly even contest a somewhat lopsided look in the 65th minute, putting the hosts three to the good with a shot that Bayer custodian Bernd Leno could have done more about, before Sidney Sam rifled a consolation effort into the far corner with quarter of an hour to go.
"Liverpool were good value for the win, they played well and very effectively," Hyypiä summarised. The long-time Liverpool defensive linchpin was given a very warm reception by the crowd on his return to Anfield Road.
1. FC Köln 0-4 Arsenal FC
Lukas Podolski marked his debut for Arsenal with two goals as the visitors cruised to a 4-0 friendly victory over Köln. The match was part of the package agreed when the 27-year-old Germany frontman switched from the Billy Goats to the London outfit over the summer.
Sections of the home crowd greeted Podolski's double-pack - a 19th-minute penalty and a left-footed shot just before half time - with jeers, but there was applause and chanting for the former hometown favourite when he was subbed off in the 69th minute.
Experience for Köln youngsters
Either side of Podolski's goals, fellow German international Per Mertesacker laid on Arsenal's opener for Thomas Vermaelen in the 7th minute, with Gervinho rounding out the scoring for the Gunners in the 62nd. Goalkeeper Timo Horn prevented an even higher final margin of defeat for the very young side sent out by Köln coach Holger Stanislawski.