Last year, Alisson Becker and Virgil van Dijk proved to be the answer to Liverpool’s defensive woes, with the team playing lockdown defense and recording clean sheet after clean sheet.
However, the Reds conceded on every single game this season since late September, and while they still managed to get positive results, concerns started to grow about their lack of clean sheets.
Notably, they were able to protect their goal over the last couple of games, so Alisson Becker explained how they managed to go over their recent defensive slump:
“It was just a matter of time and of focus.In the last two games, we were focused for the full game. Even if they had chances we were there, the defenders were there and I was there to help the team. We just need to keep going with this focus because we know our quality and we know what we can do on the pitch when we put in our whole intensity. You need to do that for 90 minutes – it’s hard, we know, but I think we showed we can do this,” Becker told Liverpool’s website.
The Reds struggled early on vs. RB Salzburg, but were able to score two quick goals and hang to a 2-0 lead to finish the group stage with a win and go through to the round of sixteen, and Becker lauded his teammates’efforts following a very rough match:
“The message was just to keep going and keep working. In the first half they made our job more difficult with the intensity they put in; they had chances, of course, but we neutralized them in the chances, I could make the saves. I’m happy with the result and happy with what we did on the pitch.
It was a difficult game for us but we did very well, everybody playing together and moving together, defending in a good way and attacking in a good way. I’m glad about the score, I’m glad about the clean sheet – but the three points were the most important thing we needed,” he concluded.