SOUVENIR PROGRAMME

Roy Keane and Daniel Sturridge clash over criticism of “arrogant” Virgil van Dijk

Roy Keane chose an interesting hill to die on by proclaiming Virgil van Dijk projected a level of “arrogance” after having the audacity to suggest only Liverpool attempted to win.

Liverpool let a massive opportunity pass them by in the goalless draw against Man United, with even 34 shots on goal not enough to find the net and maintain the 100 percent record at Anfield.

Conversely, United managed six shots throughout the 90 minutes and put together just 199 accurate passes compared to Liverpool’s 503 – that isn’t to say either team had quality, they didn’t.

Van Dijk talked to Sky Sports post-match and noted how Liverpool were the “only team trying to win,” with frustration coming from a lack of the “right decisions” in the final third.

“If you see how we played the game, having most of the ball and creating some opportunities, I think there was only one team trying to win the game – unfortunately, it didn’t happen,” the Liverpool captain said.

“In the end, they are buzzing with a point and we are very disappointed with a point.”

Keane took offence to Van Dijk’s comments, with the former United midfielder quick to label the No. 4 “arrogant” in Sky Sports’ coverage, with Daniel Sturridge quick to reject such a notion.

Keane said: “We heard Van Dijk speaking there, a lot of arrogance coming out of them, dissing United like that. He needs a reminder himself, he’s playing for a club who have one title in 30-odd years.

“He’s saying only one team wanted to win, Man United are buzzing with a point. United are in a difficult place, like Liverpool had been in a difficult place for many years.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, December 17, 2023: Manchester United's Luke Shaw handles the ball but no penalty was awarded during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“Maybe that bit of arrogance backfired on him today.”

If we had to sit through a United performance like that every week, you can understand why Keane had his knickers in such a knot.

As for Sturridge, he was just as adamant that there was no arrogance in sight – think we know which side of the fence we’re all on!

“I don’t know if it was arrogance, personally,” Sturridge said in reply. “I think he’s not disrespecting the club, I think he’s disappointed at how Liverpool have performed.

“Looking at the stats and how they controlled the game, I think he’s thinking, ‘if they had a higher line, if they tried to break us down maybe we could have had counter attacks’.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, December 17, 2023: Liverpool's captain Virgil van Dijk during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Keane wasn’t eager to let the argument go, though, as he tried to turn back the clock on Liverpool previously being happy with a point – but the former Liverpool striker was not having any of it.

Sturridge added: “What do you want him to say, Roy? Would you want him to say, ‘I’m happy with a point against Man United, that in this present moment aren’t performing at the same level we are’.”

Keane must have watched a different Van Dijk interview than the rest of us.