English Premiership

Van Dijk: Last season has helped prepare Liverpool

2019-11-12 10:08
Virgil Van Dijk
Virgil Van Dijk (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Liverpool centre-back Virgil van Dijk believes the Reds are better prepared for this season's title race after learning from last campaign's shortcomings.

Despite holding, albeit for just 24 hours, a 10-point lead last December and taking 31 points from a possible 33 in their final 11 matches of the campaign, the Reds lost out on a first championship since 1990 by one point after Manchester City rattled off 14 successive victories during the run-in.

Liverpool now have a nine-point advantage over City after beating them 3-1 on Sunday, and although everyone in the Reds camp are keeping calm, many pundits have suggested the title race is over.

City have dropped to fourth, while Leicester and Chelsea, who are second and third respectively, are eight points adrift of the Reds.

Van Dijk refuses to countenance talk of coasting to the title as there is still a long way to go and the Reds do have a jam packed fixture schedule to deal with.

However, the influential defender believes the memories of last season can help bring a better outcome for Jurgen Klopp's men.

"We took a lot of experience last year. Good things, but also some things we should have done better," he said. "We did everything possible. We shouldn't have any regrets from last year."

Van Dijk is aware of the hectic schedule and is also keeping his fingers crossed regards key players staying fit.

The Dutchman added: "We have so many difficult periods of games with so many competitions, travelling and hopefully no injuries, no illness, so anything can happen."

Liverpool have opened up an eight-point gap at the summit after taking 34 points from the first 36 available.

Only two other sides - Manchester United in 1993 and City in 2017 - have held similar Premier League advantages at this stage and both went on to win the title.

But with Leicester and Chelsea separating the two title favourites in the table the race now become a four horse race, but Van Dijk is not looking at other teams.

- TeamTalk Media

 

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Fixtures
Saturday, 14 December 2019
Liverpool v Watford, Anfield 14:30
Sheffield United v Aston Villa, Bramall Lane 17:00
Leicester City v Norwich City, King Power Stadium 17:00
Chelsea v AFC Bournemouth, Stamford Bridge 17:00
Burnley v Newcastle United, Turf Moor 17:00
Southampton v West Ham United, St. Mary's Stadium 19:30
Sunday, 15 December 2019
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Tottenham Hotspur, Molineux Stadium 16:00
Manchester United v Everton, Old Trafford 16:00
Arsenal v Manchester City, Emirates Stadium 18:30
Monday, 16 December 2019
Crystal Palace v Brighton & Hove Albion, Selhurst Park 21:45
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