Liverpool take on Manchester United on Monday night and it as much as every North-West derby is an intense fixture, both sides will be aware that that a negative result could cause panic amongst their respective fanbases.
Juergen Klopp’s side have not had the start they want as they aim for the Premier League title, drawing against Fulham and Crystal Palace. Even though it is early on in the season, there is already a four-point gap between them and title favourites Manchester City.
Yet United are in a worse situation. Two straight defeats to open the league season under new manager Erik ten Hag has not gone down well at Old Trafford, with fans concerned that they are in for another tricky year.
Speaking ahead of the fixture to The Mirror, van Dijk acknowledged that he thought confidence would be low for their rivals.
“It’s massive but it’s not about making a statement, we want to win and do everything that’s possible to win there,”
“This year they’ve had a difficult start and we’ve not had the best start that we wanted either, so it will be interesting. Obviously they’re not in the best situation confidence-wise probably, but it’s the perfect game to turn it around for them.”
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“But we’re looking at ourselves and we want to make sure we’re ready for it and we are going to work hard this week again.”
While van Dijk is not breaking any news, it confirms that Liverpool’s squad are aware of the narrative at United. The early stages of the match will be crucial, as an early blow could do significant damage to the Red Devil’s morale.