Liverpool may be around 17,000km from home during the club’s first-ever visit to Australia, but they are certainly not lacking support during stop two of their overseas tour.

Thousands of fans welcomed Brendan Rodgers and his players at Tullamarine Airport in Melbourne, where they will play the Victory on Wednesday, and they again flocked to see their heroes when they made an appearance at Federation Square – as the above photo of defenders Martin Skrtel and Sebastian Coates proves.

Liverpool Football Club’s popularity Down Under is indebted to Craig Johnston. When the Australian was 14, his parents sold their house in New South Wales so they could afford to send him for a trial at Middlesbrough. The midfielder passed, had a successful spell on Teesside, joined Liverpool in 1981 and became a fans’ favourite during seven trophy-laden years at Anfield.

Johnston went on to concoct the adidas Predator football boot, which was famously worn by Liverpool players including Steven Gerrard and other mega-stars including Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham and Xavi.