Virgil van Dijk thinks suggestions that the team would benefit from exiting the Champions League are ludicrous.
We face Napoli tonight, knowing a victory of either 1-0 or by more than two goals if the Italians score will see us qualify for the knockout stages.
Liverpool have been dreadful away from home in the competition, losing all three matches, but two wins at Anfield see us in a position where we’re actually favourites to reach the Last 16.
As we’re top of the Premier League, there has been murmurings that it would be helpful if we don’t have to worry about the Champions League come February, but van Dijk refutes this.
“I don’t think they are Liverpool fans (if they are saying that),” he told the Echo.
“We want to compete on the highest level.
“We are top of the league now but it could change next week. The main thing for us is to do everything we can to go through.
“It is going to be a tough game but I am very confident, like always in my team. At Liverpool there is always a lot of pressure, but it is good pressure. You want to play in these circumstances.
“I definitely look at the squad and think it can compete on two fronts. We still need to show it but I think we are definitely capable of competing in both competitions. Hopefully that will be the case.”
We agree with the giant Dutchman!
Liverpool are good enough and have a deep enough squad to compete in every competition.
There is no point putting in manic work to qualify for the Champions League if you’re then going to sacrifice it.
Brendan Rodgers famously made this mistake when he fielded a changed XI against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu, before losing against Chelsea the following weekend anyway.
It was the beginning of a long, painful end for the Northern Irishman.