Manchester City legend Sergio Aguero has commented on Virgil Van Dijk’s performance for Liverpool in Saturday’s Community Shield.
Liverpool beat City 3-1, with new signing Erling Haaland failing to sparkle for Pep Guardiola’s side. Watching the game via his Twitch stream as transcribed by The Mirror, Aguero suggested that Haaland couldn’t find space against Van Dijk.
“He was too used to Germany, Haaland thought he was alone, then Van Dijk arrived and said ‘welcome to the Premier League,'” said the 34-year-old.
Van Dijk and the Liverpool back-line ensured that City’s new superstar went home without his name on the scoresheet.
Clash of the titans at the King Power
Although Van Dijk deserves praise for his handling of Haaland, it must be said that the Norwegian should still have scored.
There were a couple of occasions when the forward found himself all alone in the penalty area. But for one reason or another, he wasn’t able to finish as he so often does.
Nevertheless, Van Dijk himself declared it ‘horrible’ to play against Haaland. The 22-year-old gave Virgil a proper workout like not many in the game today can.
That’s something the Dutchman will have to get used to as Liverpool face City in the years to come. Equally though, Haaland will have to adapt to the Premier League.
He won’t face defender’s of Van Dijk’s quality every week. But it could still take him time to get used to things.
A goal at the weekend could have helped with that adaptation. Liverpool’s new striker Darwin Nunez is now off and running himself. Every game that Haaland goes without scoring though, the pressure will build.
Of course, he’s good enough to make a mockery of those suggestions. He’ll probably score two or three on the opening day this weekend.
What we can hope though, is that Van Dijk has got into his head enough for the next time Liverpool play City. Regardless of his ability, Van Dijk’s mere presence can sometimes be enough to unsettle attackers.
Maybe next time they face each other, this first encounter will still be playing on Haaland’s mind.