Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk has revealed that he hasn’t felt the pressure to ‘study’ on-fire Southampton striker and former teammate Danny Ings.
The former Reds forward swapped Anfield for St Mary’s in the summer after making his 2018 loan deal permanent in the summer for a fee of £20m [BBC Sport].
Ings, 27, has been a revelation for Ralph Hassenhuttl’s team this season with the Englishman’s form paramount to their recent turnaround in the league table. He has smashed in 16 goals in 27 appearances this season – reviving the Saints to just nine points off of the top-four.
Southampton travel to the home of the runaway Premier League leaders who are unbeaten at Anfield since April 2017. UEFA Player of the Year Van Dijk has spoken out of his delight for his former teammate Ings who is currently the fourth top-scorer in the top-flight this campaign.
It will be the first time the former Burnley man has returned to Anfield since his departure in 2018. Speaking ahead of the match, Van Dijk has revealed that he is fully aware of the threat Ings will oppose come the weekend.
He told the Daily Mail: “He has been a key man for them and helped turn it around.
“I’m very happy for him and very happy for the club. I hope they kick on, but Saturday we try to get a result. At this stage, you don’t need to study strikers any more.”
Van Dijk will be hoping to extend Liverpool’s all-but invincible run-of-form this season. The European champions have dropped just two points since March 2019 and have claimed 97 points from a possible 99 in that time.
The 28-year-old has been an ever-present figure for Klopp missing just one Premier League match since his £75m move from Southampton two years ago.
The Netherland’s captain hasn’t lost a league match at Anfield since joining the Reds whilst the club have won every home match in the league since January 2019.
Ings will be hoping to get the better of the Ballon d’Or runner-up at the weekend with Englishman scoring in the two sides’ previous clash back in August – a 2-1 win for Liverpool.