Virgil van Dijk issues ominous warning to Liverpool’s Premier League title rivals – The Mirror

Virgil van Dijk believes Liverpool’s defence is “not there yet” despite keeping two clean sheets to start the season.

The Dutchman has returned to the Reds back four following nine months out injured.

Jurgen Klopp has plenty of options in defence with Van Dijk partnering Joel Matip on Saturday whilst Ibrahima Konate and Joe Gomez wait in the wings.

Liverpool have recorded successive wins to begin the season without conceding a goal against either Norwich or Burnley.

Despite that though Van Dijk feels as though improvements still need to be made, which would make the Reds an even more daunting prospect.

He said: “Obviously to win the first two games with no goals conceded is just a good thing, something to build on.

Virgil van Dijk is eyeing further improvements

“We’re not there yet, we feel that, but the only thing we can do is try to win the game in front of us and that’s what we did today.

“We knew it was going to be very tough, it’s always been tough against these guys.

“They play a certain way, they make it very difficult for us and they did today again. A lot of physical battles, a totally different challenge to last week.

“It was good to get the clean sheet again and something to build on, good things.

“There are some things that should be better, but to win here today with the fans back is just great.”

Anfield was full for the first time in 18 months and they saw Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane both score in the 2-0 win over the Clarets.

The absence of fans certainly impacted the Reds last term, who saw their home fortress breached on several occasions.

But Van Dijk believes they can play a huge role going forward.

He added: “It’s something that hopefully is going to be normal again because we need the fans – whether it’s at home games but also the away games, we need the atmosphere of fans.

“We’ve seen how football is, it belongs to the fans, with the fans. I’m just glad everyone is back.”

Fans returned to Anfield for the Reds’ win over Burnley

Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson also spoke defiantly about the return of fans, insisting that Anfield will pose a daunting challenge this term.

“Yeah, always. Always Anfield people will not like to play, I’m telling you now,” he said.

“Without a crowd it’s a totally different game, football was totally different last season with no crowd – not only at Anfield but in general. Now we’ve got the fans back it’s a different ball game.

“And hopefully we can keep our fortress, if you like, and teams won’t like coming here. We’ve got to make it difficult every time they do.”

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