Liverpool’s euphoria against Spurs on Sunday came with some potential consequences. Indeed, while the Reds showed the virtue of champions with a fortunate last-minute winner, some worrying news also came with their crucial victory.
Virgil Van Dijk, who was once again heroic in defence, made one especially important challenge in the dying minutes to deny his opponents a chance to get the lead. It turned out to be decisive in terms of the result, but the Dutch defensive general ended up injuring himself in the process.
This couldn’t come at a worse point for Liverpool. During a phase of the campaign when Joe Gomez and Dejan Lovren are returning to fitness, the Reds can’t afford their prized defensive asset to get injured. Especially when their next trip is to the St. Mary’s Stadium, van Dijk’s former charges. Though towards the bottom of the table right now, Southampton have been their bogey team in recent years, often holding them back to take away points.
This has got potential banana skin written all over it so it’s vitally important van Dijk is ready to go against an upwardly mobile Saints side.
As their attack, after Nathan Redmond and James Ward-Prowse’s rise in form, looks more dangerous than ever, Liverpool will need their talisman to see it through. At home, the Saints will move forward with pace and in numbers, as Joel Matip and Lovren are too erratic to stop them.
The Dutch defender, who’s yet to be dribbled past or outwitted by the best, is the only one to help Liverpool breeze through to victory. However, aggravating his injury by playing him half-fit could bring horrible long-term consequences.
The Reds are left in a precarious position, as losing Van Dijk or the Southampton match can potentially dent their title-winning ambitions.
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