Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius believes Man United‘s defence-minded approach was proof of the respect the Reds’ bitter rivals now have for them.
Liverpool and United battled their way to a dull 0-0 draw on Monday evening, with a lack of both chances and quality evident from start to finish.
Jose Mourinho predictably set his side up to not get beaten, often playing six at the back and producing hardly any attacks of note throughout.
Karius sees this as a compliment to Jurgen Klopp‘s emerging Liverpool side, with the goalkeeper admitting it was a difficult 90 minutes at Anfield.
“We knew we had to be patient because it’s going to be tough,” he told Goal.
“United maybe waited for the one chance to get a goal, as obviously their priority was to stop our play, our attacks.
“They know we’re a really strong team, so that’s a compliment for us.
“Second half, we managed better to get through, but United defended well with De Gea making top saves.”
It was De Gea who once again shone for United, as he often has against Liverpool, with the Spaniard making one outstanding stop to deny Philippe Coutinho in the second-half.
Karius heaped praise on his fellow ‘keeper, claiming he is one of the very best in the business currently.
“It was a really good, strong stop which was unfortunate because he was the opponent, and I would’ve much rather seen it go in. But credit to him, it was impressive.
“He’s enjoyed great development over the last few years and you can just see he gets better and better. He’s right up there among the very best in the world, playing at a consistently high level and is a top goalkeeper.”
Karius had little to do against United, in what was his third Premier League appearance for Liverpool.
There were still some shaky moments, however, not least one wayward pass inside his own penalty area, and he remains a work in progress.
As Ge Gea himself showed in his early days at United, however, patience is required with young ‘keepers moving to a more physical league.