Alisson Insists Virgil van Dijk Injury Won't Derail Liverpool's Title Defence

Oct 30, 2020, 10:45 AM GMT
Alisson believes Liverpool can cope without Van Dijk | JON SUPER/Getty Images

Liverpool keeper Alisson insists Virgil van Dijk's potentially season-ending knee injury won't have a catastrophic effect on the Reds' title defence, warning opponents that Jurgen Klopp has the players at his disposal to cope.

A nasty challenge from Jordan Pickford inflicted serious damage on the Dutchman, who played every minute for the club on their way to the Premier League title last term. His absence with an ACL tear has left them stretched at the back, and Fabinho's injury has left them with just two senior options at centre-back in Joe Gomez and Joel Matip.

Without him, however, Liverpool have returned to winning ways with three straight victories in all competitions - and Alisson believes they can keep up their impressive form, even if they will have to adapt their approach while their third captain sits out.

"We have everything we need to keep doing our job, playing our football, playing the way we play," he told Sky Sports, per The Echo.

"We don't need to make changes. Obviously you will miss some things - [like] Virgil's headers!

"He doesn't just help us in the defensive phase but attacking and scoring goals as well.

"But this will prove the strength of our team. We are a really strong side with many players who can play and give their best to reach our goals."

The challenge from Pickford that ruled Van Dijk out has been subject to much criticism, though the FA opted not to take retrospective action after nothing was given by the on-field official or VAR. From a goalkeeper's perspective, Alisson was not a fan of the Everton keeper's antics.

Virgil van Dijk, Jordan Pickford
The challenge that resulted in Van Dijk's injury | Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

"Every goalkeeper has a different way to play and a different way to move," he said. "But in that moment, 100%, it was not a necessary movement.

"Thinking what I have in my mind when I go for a situation - I go to finish the situation. If I go too soft, I know the opponent can score.

"Everyone has their own way to go for the ball, but I don't agree with that way [Pickford on Van Dijk] - everybody can see that. It was just an unnecessary moment and movement."