This match against Manchester United at Old Trafford is usually saved for later in the season, but with that looming black hole known as the World Cup happening in December, a lot of those matches got pushed up. To the third match of the season. After an uncharacteristic slow start from Liverpool, and a catastrophic one from United, the stage is set for something special - or dire.
“It’s massive but it’s not about making a statement, we want to win and do everything that’s possible to win there,” Virgil van Dijk said to the club website of the upcoming trip.
“Over the years it has proven tough for us to win there, obviously last year was a great result, we can’t deny it.This year they’ve had a difficult start and we’ve not had the best start that we wanted either, so it will be interesting.
“They are a good team in my opinion, they have good players all over the pitch. Obviously they’re not in the best situation confidence-wise probably, but it’s the perfect game to turn it around for them.
“But we’re looking at ourselves and we want to make sure we’re ready for it and we are going to work hard this week again.”
Considering Liverpool have actually been able to score goals despite not finding that first victory of the season, at least it’s not the situation United find themselves in. Old Trafford is still a historically tough place to play, as the home fans are viciously against whatever team travels there (at least until you score four before the half am I right). Even as Liverpool have their own struggles, memories of last season will hopefully carry them through, in addition to the hopeful return of some players from injury.
“It’s going to be a tough game away again, but hopefully we get some players back and get a good performance and just be positive and think about winning,” van Dijk added.
“It’s a big game, a game on its own. We are all looking forward to that.”