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Van Dijk: “You Need to Be Ready to Suffer”

Van Dijk and Konate were assured in an equally-matched game.

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FC Internazionale v Liverpool FC: Round Of Sixteen Leg One - UEFA Champions League Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Late goals by Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool FC the victory against Inter Milan away at the San Siro. The scoreline may have flattered Liverpool a little bit as Inter Milan managed to pin Liverpool’s full-back duo of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson back, and worked their own press effectively to take Liverpool’s midfield out for most of the game. Some clever subsitutions from Jürgen Klopp swung the game Liverpool‘s way. However, Liverpool’s backline of Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate was pretty assured all night and kept a vital clean sheet.

Speaking to BT Sport, big Virg spoke about Liverpool’s defensive resilience coming through:

“Everyone expected to be under pressure because they are a very good team and it’s the Champions League. I think also one of the messages before the game was, ‘You need to be ready to suffer, you need to be ready to do the hard work’ and we definitely did. It’s a very, very good performance, a clean sheet and well, happy days.”

Games between quality teams like these are mostly going to be back-and-forth affairs, and it seems some pundits are nitpicking the overall performance against a very good Inter team. Regardless, what counts is that Liverpool FC is going home with the result they wanted. Liverpool’s defence managed to keep them in the game long enough for them to score the decisive goals that were needed. With Inter down 2-0 in aggregate, expect the second leg at Anfield to be a very different affair altogether.