Liverpool’s Slovak international defender Martin Skrtel has said that a win for the Reds in Helsinki is vital in order to help boost the team’s confidence so that they can hit the ground running once the new season gets underway.

The Reds travel to Finland on Saturday to play a friendly against HJK Helsinki as they prepare for their opening fixture against Stoke City a week on Sunday.

Skrtel has spoken of how important a win is and how the team needs the fans to get behind them for the season ahead.

“That game will be very important because it’s one week before the season starts so it’s very important to get a result and get confidence up,” said the centre-back.

“We know we have a lot of fans there so it is similar to going to Asia. We want to go there so they can see us play.

“It’ll be a nice experience and it’s the last game before the season starts so it’ll be very good for us.”

Meanwhile Skrtel has fond memories of the Finnish capital having visited the country while supporting the Slovak national ice hockey team.

“I have been there two or three times,” he said.

“The last time I was in Helsinki was, I think, three years ago when I went to see the Slovakian ice hockey team.

“We won the silver medal so I have good memories and we have a lot of fans over there so it should be an interesting game as well.”