Virgil van Dijk was a happy man after Liverpool beat Crystal Palace 2-0 at Selhurst Park on Monday night to continue their 100 per cent start to the season, with the centre-back stressing on the importance of the clean sheet as well as the three points.
“It was very important to win here. We know how difficult it is to come here, so to win and keep a clean sheet as well, I’m a very happy man,” the Dutch defender was quoted as saying by the club website.
Egyptian winger Mohamed Salah won a controversial penalty towards the end of the first-half, with James Milner promptly converted before Sadio Mane scored deep in injury-time to make sure of the spoils.
Van Dijk and goalkeeper Alisson were the defensive standouts for while the latter made a couple of key stops, the latter kept former Liverpool striker Christian Benteke quiet for most parts of the 90 minutes.
“I think we had very good moments but also moments that need to be better, especially in ball possession, but overall we need to be very happy that we won here. It was going to be very tough, we knew before it was going to be a big fight, but we prepared very well, everyone was up for it and you could see that as well.”
Liverpool have emerged as the main threat to Manchester City’s quest for a successful Premier League title defence after steady progress under Jurgen Klopp and some spectacular signings in the summer.
“That’s key as well. For success you need to do it all together, you win and you lose together,” Van Dijk opined.
“But obviously we are trying to work hard every day and hopefully we are going to keep on building on this and just keep going – that’s the only thing for it and be positive.”
Competition for a starting spot, especially in the midfield and the attacking departments, is immense and fans are hopeful that their long-standing Premier League title drought might be over.
Obviously we know it is going to be a very tough season so we need to be confident but not underestimate anyone. We will just recover from this and be ready for the next game.”
With six goals scored and none conceded in two wins, Liverpool are now second in the Premier League table, behind City only on a marginally inferior goal difference.
The Reds next take on Brighton & Hove Albion at Anfield on Saturday at 2200 IST.