In a completely overhauled defense and without his usual starters, Van Dijk proved once again that he is the boss, during this clash at the top of the Premier League between Liverpool and Manchester City (1-1). With Alexander-Arnold and Konaté injured and Robertson on the bench, the Dutchman had to lead a line of four made up of youngsters Quansah and Bradley, as well as the versatile Gomez. From the outset, number 4 set an example by intercepting Phil Foden (1st). He was in the mood for the match. Throughout the first half, he held the walls of Anfield, as when he applied the brakes against Haaland heading at full speed towards the goal (39th). He also made a significant number of interventions on the ground or in the air, allowing Liverpool to breathe. Patient, then aggressive when necessary, Van Dijk played fair this Sunday, and did not hit a false note.

Big matches are decided by details, and Pep Guardiola knows this better than anyone. While Van Dijk contained the few ardor of the Cititzens, the Catalan felt the moment to bring out his secret weapon. On a harmless corner, the combination came to life. Aké pushed Mac Allister away from his near post, leaving the way open for John Stones to arrive, ready to cut De Bruyne’s perfect cross to the ground. Liverpool were fooled, and the English defender just had to push the ball into the net. Good work in training pays off.

In the race for the English crown, this result is frustrating for some, but others are rubbing their hands. If City had won, the suspense would have taken a hit. Liverpool could have taken a two-point lead at the top. Finally, this score is the most interesting 10 days before the end of the championship. On the podium, Liverpool, Manchester City and Arsenal are in one point. Thanks to their recent cards, Arsenal are ahead on goal difference with 64 units. Liverpool are hot on the heels of the Gunners on equal points. Behind, the outgoing champions are a little behind (63 pts). The Manchester City-Arsenal poster for March 31 is already salivating. This final straight line promises to be crazy.


Some of the best attackers in the world were lined up on the pitch this Sunday, but everyone remained silent. Starting with Haaland, hiding behind Van Dijk and Quansah. The Norwegian only had one opportunity and he missed it, being hypnotized by the Reds captain. Nunez had another problem, that of positioning. From the first minute of play, the Uruguayan was whistled offside. Almost a quarter of an hour later, he did it again and ruined the Reds’ great opportunity, concluded by Diaz in Ederson’s goal. Placed on the left wing, Alvarez did what he could in a position that was not his, and tried in vain. Entering the game, Salah and Gakpo lacked accuracy, or even courage, in certain situations. In the end, they all harvested, but none more than Diaz.

One player may have more regrets than others, and his name is Luis Diaz. The Liverpool number 7 had the best opportunities in a sick attack, but we have to believe that he was not in the best shape. Before the break, the Colombian passed the City defenders one by one before finding himself in a striking position, for his first miss of the match. Even though he was pretty good at hitting, one action will stick in his head if the Reds narrowly lose the title. In the 61st, Salah, barely inside, throws him alone in the depth face-to-face with Ortega. Diaz opens his foot too much and misses the inevitable. Several missed checks in goal positions later, he can blame himself.

The end of the match, particularly animated by Liverpool’s forcing in the citizen area, ended with a strange play. On one of the last chance corners in added time, Alexis Mac Allister rushed for the ball and received a high kick from Jérémy Doku. While the fault seemed clear, especially since this situation could have led to a goal action for Klopp’s men, Michael Oliver did not flinch. A few seconds were enough for the headset to make its decision: no second penalty awarded. Without having consulted the VAR screen, the English referee rushed the end of the match, with the score 1-1. A result which, if it had been changed, could have offered a completely different twist at the end of the season. Decisive for the title race? The future will tell.