Virgil van Dijk felt Liverpool got away with being “very poor” in a 2-1 Premier League victory over Leicester City at Anfield.
Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall took advantage of some slack Reds defending to give the Foxes an early lead, but Wout Faes gifted the Reds a fourth consecutive win on Friday.
The Leicester centre-back scored two first-half own goals to give Jurgen Klopp’s side a victory that moves them just two points behind fourth-placed Tottenham in the battle for Champions League qualification.
Liverpool were not at their fluent best, with Darwin Nunez and Mohamed Salah wasteful in front of goal.
6 & 0.57 – Among players in Europe’s top 10 leagues with 500+ minutes played this season, Darwin Núñez ranks first for shots per 90 (6.0), but 99th for goals per 90 (0.57). Bedlam. pic.twitter.com/l1FbPW4j7e
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 30, 2022
Reds centre-back Van Dijk offered a frank assessment of the performance in their final match of 2022, which was watched by new signing Cody Gakpo on Merseyside.
The Netherlands defender told Sky Sports: “We were very poor today but it’s just good to get the three points, very important to win these type of games, that’s the positive.
“Now we have to recover, improve and prepare for Brentford [on Monday]. We tried to get in the game, it wasn’t good enough and we all know that. There are plenty of things we have to improve.”
He added: “At times we were maybe too quick and then we lose the ball and it’s a bit too open, and they can play, but we have to take the three points and on to the next one.”
Liverpool head into 2023 in sixth spot with momentum after a disappointing start to the season.