3 reasons why Alisson was more important than Van Dijk in Liverpool's Champions League triumph
- Contrary to popular belief, Alisson was more important than Van Dijk in Liverpool's Champions League triumph, here are three reasons why.
#2 Without his breathtaking save, they wouldn't have even made it out of the group stage
Given how impressively they ended the season, it is easy to forget that Liverpool were a hair's breadth away from being eliminated from the group stages.
The Reds started their Champions League campaign very poorly, sitting in third place behind Paris Saint-Germain and Napoli. Heading into the final matchday of the group stage having posted back-to-back defeats against Red Star Belgrade and PSG, it made their matchday six clash against Napoli a must-win, with the winner taking all.
Liverpool headed into the match three points behind the Italians and having lost the first leg at the Stadio San Paolo 1-0, the Reds needed to win to qualify.
Mohamed Salah put the hosts ahead in the first half to give his side the advantage, but their precarious situation meant that their failure to get another goal meant they were living life on the edge.
Just how dangerous they were living surfaced in the final seconds of injury time as Napoli created for themselves a golden opportunity when Arkadiusz Milik found himself in space from just eight yards out with only the goalkeeper to beat.
The Polish international controlled the ball expertly before placing it low into the bottom left corner of Alisson's goal for a certain equalizer, but in scenes which shocked the world, the 26-year-old showed great reflexes to keep out the ball and send social media into meltdown and Liverpool into the second round.
His breathtaking save led a flabbergasted Klopp to enthuse after the match that if he had known how good he was, he would have paid double for him.
Without Alisson's spectacular last-second save against Napoli in the group stage, Liverpool would not have even made it into the Round of 16, much less win the trophy, and as such, the Brazilian international deserves more praise than he gets.Published 05 Jun 2019, 09:43 IST