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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Liverpool: Dispirited Van Dijk says Man Utd draw ‘feels like a loss’

Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk said Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Manchester United felt like a defeat as the Reds relinquished control of the Premier League title race.

Jurgen Klopp’s men travelled to Old Trafford seeking a win which would have restored their two-point advantage at the summit, and they were on course for victory when Luis Diaz’s volley capped a dominant first half and put them 1-0 up.

However, Bruno Fernandes levelled from inside the centre-circle with United’s first shot of the game five minutes into the second period, then Kobbie Mainoo put the hosts ahead with a wonderful strike.

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Mohamed Salah’s late penalty salvaged a point for Klopp’s team, but they now trail Arsenal on goal difference and sit just one point clear of third-placed Manchester City as the title race heats up.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Van Dijk said the draw was reminiscent of Liverpool’s 4-3 extra-time defeat on the same ground in the FA Cup last month, when the Reds missed several chances to kill the tie before seeing their quadruple hopes dashed.

“It feels Like a loss, it is our fault again,” the defender said. “We had so many chances and we should have finished the game off.

“We should have been 2-0 up at least, but in football unfortunately if these things don’t happen you give them the feeling they can come back, and that’s what happened.

“Unfortunately an individual mistake happened with the equaliser and we had so much time to put it right, but we were in a rush. Even after being 2-1 down, we created so much.”

Fernandes’ stunning equaliser came after a mistake from Van Dijk’s defensive partner Jarell Quansah, whose blind pass allowed the United skipper to lob Caoimhin Kelleher from all of 45 yards out.

Asked if Quansah was beating himself up about that error, which came when Liverpool were in complete control of the game, Van Dijk said: “He shouldn’t.

“Mistakes happen in football. Everyone who has a career in football makes mistakes, and you can only learn from it.”

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.
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