Virgil Van Dijk ran towards Sevilla’s Joris Gnagnon after the full-time whistle.
Liverpool faced defeat in the hands of Sevilla during a pre-season friendly at Fenway Park. But, the game will be remembered for the wrong reasons, mainly because of the harsh tackles from the Spanish side.
Ever Banega was cautioned for a late lunge in the first half, which altered the Reds about the opponents’ physicality in this game. In the second half, Dejan Lovren slightly clipped a player his half, but the referee refused to blow the whistle. When the young left-back Yasser Larouci carried the ball through the middle, Sevilla’s Joris Gnagnon, with full vengeance, lashed the teenager away by leaving his foot on him.
The French International tried to pick himself out, but he was in distraught with full pain. This forced Larouchi to be stretched off which infuriated the whole Liverpool side. That was a potential leg-breaker on a young player taking strides towards first-team football.
After the game, Virgil Van Dijk squared up to Joris Gnagnon near the advertisement board and had a confrontment. He was also followed by Jordan Henderson and Andy Robertson before Sevilla players diffused the situation.
VVD, Hendo and Robbo confront Gnagnon pic.twitter.com/TvGTS0iOQy
— Fields Of Anfield Road #SixTimes (@FOARsite) July 22, 2019
They shook hands with the rest of the Sevilla players.
In the post-match press conference, Jurgen Klopp insisted that Larouci is ‘okay’, but Van Dijk and Milner made their feeling known to the public.
Klopp reckons Lauouci is ok. He’d like to say more about what happened but holds back. ‘I’d still like to go on holiday in Spain.’
— Simon Hughes (@Simon_Hughes__) July 22, 2019
— Neil Jones (@neiljonesgoal) July 22, 2019
Van Dijk said: “I saw it from the side, it’s not nice,” he said. “Especially when it happens against such a young guy who is playing pretty well this season. I think it says something about him.
“You have to just deal with it, but obviously you don’t want to have injuries in a game like this. You want to get fit, you want to get back to your best. Obviously everyone wants to win the game, but the most important thing is to get fit. Hopefully for Yasser it is not that bad.”
— Dominic King (@DominicKing_DM) July 22, 2019
James Milner, meanwhile, told the Daily Mail’s Dominic King: “You don’t see many red cards in a friendly,” he reflected.
“They said we should have put [the ball] out [for an earlier foul] but it is up to the referee to stop a game.
“If you want to foul, pull a shirt. Don’t take a young lad by the knee. Seeing it again it is a disgrace.”
Young Yasser Larouci was spotted with crutches while leaving the stadium, but Liverpool will continue their pre-season trip in the United States as they prepare to take on Sporting CP on Wednesday.