Published: Sun, February 11, 2018
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

Virgil van Dijk faces Southampton for the first time since joining Liverpool

Virgil van Dijk faces Southampton for the first time since joining Liverpool

Roberto Firmino fired Liverpool ahead after seven minutes after being set up by Mohamed Salah and Salah struck shortly before halftime as the visitors eased to the three points.

Despite climbing the Premier League table after ending a 13-game win less streak in the league on Saturday, Southampton could still find themselves back down in the relegation zone before kick-off, highlighting the importance of trying to take points from every game we play until we're safe.

Virgil van Dijk starts against his old team Southampton for the first time since arriving at Liverpool in January, with fellow ex-Saints Adam Lallana, Dejan Lovren and Sadio Mane also in the squad.

Southampton did soon begin to settle into the game, though, and Jack Stephens had their first shot on goal when he dragged a long-range effort wide of the target while looking to score for a fourth successive game.

Saints were on the verge of equalizing when Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg trapped a diagonal ball in the 18, but Loris Karius came charging to make a fine save.

Karius, easily the busier of the two goalkeepers, was tested again just before the half-hour mark, halting Guido Carrillo's header from a James Ward-Prowse cross.

Southampton continued to knock on the door, though, and Ward-Prowse was on the other end of two risky crosses to the back post but saw both of his headers saved by Karius.

However, Salah reduced the Tottenham striker's lead at the top of the goal-scoring charts to one goal following his precise finish on the stroke of half-time after Firmino's world-class assist.

Southampton did have one threat which saw Hoedt dart across the near post to meet a devilish delivery from Ward-Prowse, but he got too much on his attempted flick to put it past the near post.

Firmino nearly extended Liverpool's lead on 71 minutes only for Alex McCarthy to make a brilliant save before Salah failed to convert the rebound.

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