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Sport Hertha beat Liverpool in seven-goal thriller as Van Dijk returns

01:24  30 july  2021
01:24  30 july  2021 Source:   skysports.com

Liverpool open pre-season with two draws

  Liverpool open pre-season with two draws Liverpool began their pre-season fixture schedule with back-to-back 1-1 draws in two 30-minute mini-matches against FC Wacker Innsbruck and VfB Stuttgart. Jurgen Klopp's side are currently in Austria for a training camp, with 22 different players getting a run-out during the Salzburg encounters. © Getty Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp congratulates goalscorer Sadio Mane after the pre-season draw with VfB Stuttgart Divock Origi's penalty gave Liverpool the lead in the first fixture of the night against Innsbruck before Ronivaldo's header secured a draw for the Austrians.

VIRGIL VAN DIJK and Joe Gomez were cheered with virtually their every touch by 11,000 fans as the Liverpool defenders made surprise returns after long injury lay-offs in a 4-3 friendly defeat against Hertha Berlin. Fellow Liverpool defender Joe Gomez also played his first game since early last season, having returned to training this monthCredit: Getty. And England star Gomez was even booked for a foul on a night when Liverpool 's other backline players - as a unit at least - looked creaky.

Liverpool continue their preparations for the new season with a friendly against German side Hertha Berlin from Austria with Virgil van Dijk set to make his first appearance in nine months. The big news is that both Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez make the bench and are set to appear for the first time after long injury spells. Van Dijk has not featured since the injury he sustained in the Merseyside Derby last October, while Gomez suffered his injury just a month later while in training on international duty for England.

Hertha Berlin got the better of Liverpool in a seven-goal thriller, but it was the return from injury of both Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez that will have pleased manager Jurgen Klopp the most.

​​​In their second pre-season game of their summer tour of Austria, Klopp's team soon found themselves 2-0 down after goals from Santiago Ascacibar and Suat Serdar's wonder strike.

Virgil van Dijk holding a football ball: Virgil van Dijk made his Liverpool return from injury against Hertha Berlin © Getty Virgil van Dijk made his Liverpool return from injury against Hertha Berlin

However, Liverpool rallied to go in level at the break thanks to well-taken efforts from Sadio Mane and Takumi Minamino, only for substitute Stevan Jovetic's second-half double to give Hertha the spoils.

Late own goal gives Liverpool win against Mainz

  Late own goal gives Liverpool win against Mainz A late own goal gave Liverpool a 1-0 win over Bundesliga side Mainz in their first full pre-season game in Austria. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain missed the best chance of the first half, seeing his effort in the box saved well by Robin Zentner, before Liverpool changed all 11 players at half-time at the Goldberg Stadium in Grodig.

Van Dijk hasn't played for Liverpool since undergoing successful surgery on his cruciate ligament knee injury in October last year. The 30-year-old missed the majority of the 2020-21 campaign as result and decided against lining up with the Netherlands at the European Championships in order to focus on his recovery, and Klopp has now revealed he is nearing a long-awaited comeback. The Reds head coach gave an update on Van Dijk ahead of his side's meeting with Bundesliga outfit Hertha at Tivoli Stadion in Innsbruck on Thursday.

Hertha Berlin vs Liverpool latest odds. They are 4/ 7 (1.57) favourites with bet365 to build on that performance with another victory over German opposition in Austria. Pal Dardai’s men endured a disappointing Bundesliga campaign last season but can be backed at 7 /2 (4.50) to restore some optimism by pulling off a morale-boosting victory over their illustrious opponents. Virgil van Dijk is set to make an appearance after over nine months out with a knee injury, while Diogo Jota and Andy Robertson should get their first minutes of the pre-season after joining up with the squad recently.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain did pull a goal back late on, although it was the sight of Van Dijk and Gomez playing the last 20 minutes at the Tivoli Stadion Tirol that will have mattered most to Klopp come the full-time whistle.

How the teams lined up | Match statsPre-season results and fixtures

First-half team: Kelleher; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Matip, Tsimikas; Milner, Keita, Elliott; Mane, Salah, MinaminoSecond-half team: Adrian, Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Williams, Robertson, Milner, Keita, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jones, Salah, Mane

How Van Dijk and Gomez returned to boost Reds

If Klopp's team were expecting an easy introduction in Innsbruck, then were much mistaken as after a Liverpool-dominated opening period, Hertha soon raced into a surprise two-goal lead.

Selke: "I want to be present and noticeable"

 Selke: Davie Selke is at Hertha BSC in the previous preparation of one of the winners. After one and a half unhappy years as a rental player at Werder Bremen he takes a new start in Berlin. © Imago Images / Matthias Koch Herthas Striker Davie Selke is a winner of the previous preparation. inner retreating of the Hertha striker from Hertha's training camp in Leogang / Austria reports Andreas Hunzinger The holiday this year has used Selke to go in and to answer a few questions.

Virgil van Dijk says “the work doesn’t stop now” in an emotional message to Liverpool fans and his team-mates after making his long-awaited return from injury. The Netherlands international has been sidelined for nine months with a serious knee injury but finally pulled the red shirt on again as a late The former Manchester City striker then scored his second and Hertha ’s fourth with ten minutes remaining, turning sharply away from Van Dijk and Andy Robertson to leave both players on the floor before calmly finishing beyond goalkeeper Adrian. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain pulled a goal back late

Good. Mo Salah: 9. Was arguably the most dangerous player for Liverpool today, wreaking: havoc on Hertha 's defence. Was constantly in motion, linking up well with Trent on the right-hand side. And that backheel assist belongs in a museum. Sadio Mane: 8.5. Looked very sharp tonight. Netted the Reds' first goal . Was a constant threat in the final third as he got into right positions and ran into spaces. Ibrahima Konate: 8. Solid at the back. Often pushed forward, becoming an extra man in Liverpool 's midfield.

Ascacibar bundled the Bundesliga team ahead after 21 minutes, only to be taken off after being injured stretching to touch home Marvin Plattenhardt's inviting free-kick, before Serdar doubled their lead 10 minutes later with an eye-catching strike.

There appeared little danger when the midfielder gained possession in the box, however, from the tightest of angles, he somehow found the top corner of the net with an exquisite volley.

Liverpool were more than a little unfortunate to find themselves 2-0 behind, but were soon level as Konstantinos Tsimikas took advantage of Alexander Schwolow's poor throw to set up Mane for a close-range finish eight minutes before half-time.

Then with just three minutes to go to the break, Naby Keita released Mohamed Salah in the box and from the forward's gorgeous back heel, there was Minamino to complete the comeback.

Liverpool continued to dominate after the interval, only to somehow find themselves behind again as substitute Jovetic stole in behind Nat Phillips to head home midway through the second period.

This time no slip ups for van Vleuten

  This time no slip ups for van Vleuten Australian Grace Brown was fourth as Dutch cycling star Annemiek van Vleuten gained Olympic redemption with gold in the women's time trial.Dutch road cycling star Annemiek van Vleuten is the Olympic gold medallist in the time trial.

At three goals down, not even the most ardent of Salzburg supporters would have imagined what would madness would ensue. No team had scored three goals at Anfield in a European game since October 2014 and no team had beaten Liverpool in its own back yard since Real Madrid triumphed 3-0 five years ago. Sadio Mane, playing against his former club, had given Liverpool a ninth-minute lead with Andrew Robertson and Mohamed Salah adding further goals to leave Liverpool in pole position with just nine minutes of the first half remaining. Even when Hwang Hee-Chan turned Virgil van Dijk inside

Virgil van Dijk is set to retain his place at the heart of Liverpool ’s defence as Jurgen Klopp gave an upbeat assessment of his fitness. The Holland international has been the outstanding performer in the Premier League this season and has only missed 35 minutes of Liverpool ’s title challenge, when he damaged his There were concerns, though, that Van Dijk would miss the Anfield clash with Leicester City having been struggling with illness since Liverpool returned from a warm weather training break in Dubai — given the amount of injuries Klopp is juggling, it would have presented a huge blow.

All eyes were soon directed towards the touchline as finally, after a raft of changes, Klopp finally brought on centre-backs Van Dijk and Gomez for the last 20 minutes, their first runouts since both damaged ACLs last autumn.

It was not to be the fairytale ending though as Jovetic, faced with just Van Dijk to beat on the edge of the area, turned the Dutchman inside out, before firing home his second with 10 minutes to go.

Van Dijk did then play a role in his side's late consolation, with his header causing confusion in the Hertha box, before Oxlade-Chamberlain rifled an unstoppable volley into the net two minutes from time.

But it was too little, too late for Klopp's men, not that the German would have minded though after seeing his two central defenders come through their 20-minute comebacks unscathed.

Liverpool fixtures 2021/22: Norwich on opening weekendLiverpool transfer rumours | Get Sky Sports | What's new for 2021/22?Made to look a fool for Hertha's fourth, but who cares?

Analysis by Sky Sports' Richard Morgan:

It has been nine long months for Liverpool fans waiting for the return of Virgil van Dijk, the rock at the heart of their defence and one of the main reasons behind the club's then domination of English and European football.

"At some point limits are reached": Bobic is clearly

 Luca network because of talent leaves Hertha BSC. Fredi Bobic is anything but enthusiastic about it and speaks plain text. © provided by sport1.de "At some point limits are reached": Bobic is clear because of Talent it is a transfer coup, the Borussia Mönchengladbach to all appeared to succeed. Luca Net probably comes for four million euros from Hertha BSC and will be for the foals in the future. Officially the change is not yet, but there is no doubt more.

The Netherlands international suffered a horrific knee injury in last October's Merseyside derby, ruling him out of the whole of last season, as well as this summer's Euros.

As a result, Klopp's team produced a disjointed title defence, eventually limping home third after a late end-of-season rally, but that is all forgotten now following the centre-back's return against Hertha on Thursday night.

Van Dijk may have only played the last 20 minutes in Austria, not surprisingly looking rusty in that time alongside fellow returnee Joe Gomez, but it is the vital first step on the road to hopefully a full recovery.

Yes, the 30-year-old was made to look like a novice defender by Stevan Jovetic for Hertha's fourth and final goal, but it is now miles in his legs and minutes on the clock that matter more than any marks for artistic impression.

Liverpool supporters will just pray there are no niggly little injuries for the pair after a first workout in almost a year.

What's next?

Liverpool take on La Liga side Athletic Bilbao at Anfield on Sunday, with the pre-season friendly kicking off at 4pm.

Liverpool wait on Robertson scan after ankle injury in friendly .
Andy Robertson will undergo a scan on Monday after suffering an ankle injury in Liverpool's friendly against Athletic Bilbao on Sunday. The Scotland international twisted his ankle during the 1-1 draw at Anfield, less than a week before Liverpool begin their Premier League season at Norwich next Saturday, live on Sky Sports.

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