One of the most anticipated matches of the year took place on Saturday and ended about how you’d expect. Even though Liverpool were on a good run of form once again, they were unable to break down their northwestern rivals Manchester United at their home stadium and went back with nothing but a widened gap between second and third place. Virgil van Dijk played against United on Saturday for the first time as a Liverpool player and wasn’t shy with how the fixture made him feel afterwards.
“Frustrated,” van Dijk said of his feelings following the match on Saturday.
”Obviously to concede two almost identical goals was frustrating and it was difficult to break them down today because they sat back waiting for the counter-attack.
“Unfortunately, we couldn’t break them down.”
A stacked defense was what anyone expected from Mourinho’s Manchester United, so it’s surprising that Liverpool were fairly unprepared for it. Even after the home side took the lead fourteen minutes in.
“First of all, we don’t need to concede the two goals in the first half; for the rest, it was difficult to break them down, they sit and hope for the best on the break,” the defender continued.
”We needed to try to break them down but it wasn’t good enough.”
It wasn’t for lack of trying, with Liverpool getting off 14 shots but only two of those were on target, and the majority of the possession. Gee, where have we heard all of this before? There’s even arguments being made for the many chances at penalties that Liverpool could’ve been given, and would they have actually changed the game.
Thankfully, unless they progress further into the Champions League this week, this will be the last time we have to deal with this Manchester United side this season. There are lessons to be learned from this match for sure, and problems to be addressed, but for only their fourth loss this season, Liverpool are doing okay. It’s just disappointing as always to lose to a rival, especially one that you’re trailing in the table.
Especially Manchester United.