Virgil van Dijk has urged his Liverpool teammates not to let anxiety affect their titles chances after they missed the chance to go seven points clear with a frustrating draw against Leicester on Wednesday.
Manchester City’s loss to Newcastle the night before presented Liverpool with a great chance to extend their lead, but an unbalanced team and icy conditions made for a difficult evening against the resilient Foxes.
The Anfield crowd, which started the night in a celebratory mood following City’s defeat and Sadio Mane‘s early goal, quickly grew agitated by the Reds’ disjointed display as Leicester equalised through Harry Maguire and created the better chances throughout the second half.
“It sounded like it,” said Van Dijk, when asked about the fans’ nervousness (via the Telegraph).
“You get that feeling as well from the crowd and I think it’s not really necessary at the moment. But obviously everyone wants to win so bad and that’s what we want as well, but sometimes you need to be very patient.
“In the end it’s all about showing on the pitch and we’re not going to be affected by that. We want everyone to cheer us on and keep pushing even if we have tough moments, even if we’re 1-0 down or maybe more.
“We just need everyone to pull in the same direction and keep going, that’s the only way forward.”
It was the first time Liverpool had dropped points against a team from outside the top six this season, and the first time they had dropped points from a winning position at Anfield since last February.
The point was enough to extend Liverpool’s lead to five points ahead of second-placed City, but they’ll hope for a better result in next Monday’s match against West Ham.