Premier League News: Van Dijk “will never forget” the return of Liverpool as the focus shifts to the tilt of the title


Virgil van Dijk will never forget the “special” feeling of coming back from injury alongside Liverpool center back partner Joe Gomez.

Both Van Dijk and Gomez watched much of last season from the sidelines, while the Reds were hit with injury issues in their Premier League title defense.

Van Dijk had started every league game in the previous two seasons but suffered anterior cruciate ligament injury in a challenge with Everton’s Jordan Pickford in October 2020.

Gomez made his debut alongside the Dutch international on 22 occasions in 2019-20, with Liverpool winning 19 of those games and only suffering 17, but also suffered a knee injury while away for England last year. November.

However, from the date of Gomez’s injury to the end of the 2020-21 season, only Manchester City (23) have conceded fewer league goals than Liverpool (26), who have kept 11 clean sheets in this period – behind City (17) and Chelsea. (15) – as qualified for the Champions League.

Returns for the defensive pair are an extra boost, however, and Van Dijk particularly enjoyed returning to the field alongside Gomez in a friendly against Hertha Berlin.

“[It was] special, “he told Liverpool’s official website.” We said to ourselves: we have to absorb it all, we have to absorb it, enjoy it, let it make you stronger, let it make you even more hungry to stay fit.

“Being there in that moment, in that moment, was special. I’ll never forget it.”

Van Dijk added: “I think positivity is a very important thing, we have quality – that’s obvious. We were just very, very unlucky with injuries last year, especially in the central defender position.

“In the end, Rhys [Williams], Born [Phillips] and Ozan [Kabak] did a fantastic job of making sure we have at least the Champions League and us [came] Third.

“But we were unlucky in some positions which made it very difficult for us as a team to play the same way and have the same intensity as we normally have, so we worked a lot on that.

“We hope – and we try – to stay fit, all of us. It’s something we shouldn’t take for granted if that happens. “

With their key men back in shape, Liverpool are looking to get back into the title race, with their 69 points last season the fifth lowest overall by a reigning Premier League champion.

“The standard is very high [in pre-season], we train hard, we try to get back to the right tactics and we hope to prepare for a very, very good season, “he said.

“It will be difficult with teams that are improving around us, trying to compete to become Premier League champions. We, too, want to be up there again, do everything and set the stage for the moment. “


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