Home News Liverpool’s incredible second-half stats set new record – with Van Dijk colossal,...

Liverpool’s incredible second-half stats set new record – with Van Dijk colossal, again!

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Virgil van Dijk was operating at a world-class standard against Man City, leading his side by example as Liverpool left Man City feeling like the lucky ones with a point.

With a defence that boasted two players who had never played Premier League football until this season and the ever versatile Joe Gomez, Van Dijk marshalled his backline superbly.

Jamie Carragher was one of many lining up to lavish praise on the Dutchman after the draw, saying: “I actually think Van Dijk is a better centre-back than Haaland is a striker.

“You think about the battle of the best centre-back vs the best centre forward. Virgil van Dijk came out on top.”

In a one-on-one battle with Erling Haaland in the first half, Van Dijk corralled him beautifully, and at the end of the 90 minutes, the City striker had only one touch inside Liverpool’s box.

Van Dijk was colossus, as per FotMob, he completed 77 of his 79 passes (97 percent accuracy), six of seven long balls (86 percent), won three of his four tackles, had a game-high four interceptions and won five of his eight duels.

With a commanding presence and his calm nature – exemplified by another well-though out headed clearance in the box – the Liverpool skipper led by example.

 

What about Endo…

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 10, 2024: Manchester City's Mateo Kova?i? (L) is challenged by Liverpool's Wataru End? during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester City FC at Anfield. The game ended 1-1. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

With every passing game the decision to sign Wataru Endo becomes increasingly savvy, and he put on another clinic at Anfield.

Anchoring the midfield, Endo was outstanding as he helped his side dominate against this City team, with his move to jostle Kevin De Buryne off the ball a particular highlight for many.

He is constantly aware of what is around him, and this allows him to send the ball forwards instead of consistently recycling the ball at the back – he does the simple things so very well.

Statistically, his performance eared him the sixth-highest rating from FotMob (7.5-out-of-10), but Reds will certainly have viewed this performance closer to a 10:

  • Completed 59 of 62 passes (95 percent) – fourth-best
  • Won 6 of his 7 duels
  • 6 recoveries
  • 2 interceptions – joint-third best
  • Created 1 chance

As a whole, Liverpool’s midfield were mightily impressive, and Alexis Mac Allister was another key cog – he was crowned FotMob’s Man of the Match.

 

‘Best second half we ever played against City’

Pep Guardiola likened Anfield to a “tsunami” in the second half, while Klopp hailed his side’s “best performance in the second half we ever played against Man City. We never dominated them as much.”

And the stats certainly back that up.

The Reds had an xG of 2.14 compared to City’s 0.41 in the second half, finished with 12 shots to their three, seven corners to their none, and 21 touches in the opposition box to City’s eight.

As per Opta, Liverpool’s second-half shots were the most City have faced after half time in a league game since May 2021, against Brighton.

Moreover, the Reds’ 19 shots in total was their most in a Premier League game against City since February 2013.

The Reds will know they let City get away with one and that will sting, but let’s not forget this side were missing 10 senior players and still did that to Guardiola’s side.


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