Liverpool defender Van Dijk forced off after nasty clash against Salzburg
Virgil van Dijk was forced off in Liverpool’s pre-season friendly after suffering a nasty-looking clash of heads [COURTESY]

Virgil van Dijk was forced off in Liverpool’s pre-season friendly against RB Salzburg after suffering a nasty-looking clash of heads.

The Reds were 2-0 down in Austria in the early stages of the second half when the incident occurred, and the Dutch defender was substituted shortly afterwards, with Nat Phillips his replacement.

He left the field clutching a pad to his cut eye, but fortunately it did not look to be anything more serious and he should be available to face Arsenal in the Community Shield on Saturday.

It was a match that certainly was not going to plan for the Reds, and they found themselves 2-0 down after just 13 minutes.

They got off to the worst possible start when Fabinho sloppily gave away possession in his own half, with Patson Daka punishing the Brazilian and firing past Alisson after just two minutes to give the hosts the lead.

And the same player doubled the lead just ten minutes later after more suspect defending, with Joe Gomez at fault this time in giving the ball away down the right.

Jurgen Klopp’s side improved as the game went on, forcing the Salzburg goalkeeper into a number of good saves, but it was hardly ideal preparation for their game against the Gunners at Wembley.

And with the Premier League campaign just over two weeks away from kicking off, manager Jurgen Klopp certainly has a lot to ponder as his side look to defend their title.

Speaking about his side’s preparations ahead of the game against Salzburg, Klopp said: “The trip is complete when this game is played, so there’s two, three hours in between now and then.

“Training [was] promising, it was relatively high intensity in the session. Yesterday not that much. We focused on throw-ins in the last two days a little bit, so we tried to use Thomas [Gronnemark] because he was over and it was important to us. 

“To be honest, we played like a full very, very intense training session. Is it the highest quality? I don’t know. We will see. ”

Liverpool defender Van Dijk forced off after nasty clash against Salzburg
Liverpool’s Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk (C) walks onto the pitch past Manchester City’s Spanish manager Pep Guardiola (C left) during the English Premier League football match between Manchester City and Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England, on July 2, 2020. (Photo by Dave Thompson / POOL / AFP)

 

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