Virgil van Dijk hammered for ‘letting Chelsea score’ as Liverpool conceded two

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Virgil Van Dijk has been singled out for criticism following his uncharacteristic poor performance for Liverpool during the first-half of their Premier League clash against Chelsea.

The Netherlands skipper, who recovered from a serious knee injury over the summer, didn't look his usual dominating self after Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah had found the target.

Sky Sports pundits Graeme Souness and Jamie Carragher both had words to say about the 30-year-old during the break, with Chelsea handed a path back into the game.

After Matteo Kovacic fired home in style from outside the box, Christian Pulisic was sent through on goal past a sleeping defence before slotting past Caoimhin Kelleher.

Then at the break, Souness said of the second goal: "Salah should do better here, Antonio Rudiger is intimidating physically.

"But why doesn't Van Dijk come across there? He's just running in a straight line back to his own goal. Salah to begin with… then a nice dink, but come over, come over. He's not even sprinting."

With Carragher saying of Liverpool's defensive performance: "They've got an obsession, Liverpool's centre-backs, with always staying in line with each other, they never cover each other.

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"There's an obsession with playing offside.

"We noticed that right throughout the game, the space between the two is too big, so his starting position, Van Dijk, because he's not intense enough to get over, he doesn't want to cover his other centre-back, he plays in line, and that's why he's too far over to get across."

Fans of rival clubs have also slammed the defender, with one writing: "Don't ever compare Virgil van Dijk to Ruben Dias, we're clear."

Another said: "What was Van Dijk even doing there."

A third continued: "Seeing the replay makes it even worse. Van Dijk should have come across and made the challenge… lazy defending."

With a fourth saying: "Van Dijk is the most overrated player ever. No one else would get away with the stuff he does."

  • Liverpool FC
  • Virgil van Dijk
  • Premier League
  • Chelsea FC
  • Jamie Carragher

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