Van Dijk: Premier League not two-horse race between Liverpool and Man City
Virgil van Dijk insists the Premier League is not a two-horse race between leaders Manchester City and nearest rivals Liverpool.
City moved five points clear at the top with a 2-1 win at Watford but Liverpool will get back to within two if they win at Burnley on Wednesday.
Victory would set a club record for the most points the Reds have amassed 15 matches into a league season – moving them on to 39 – with many touting Jurgen Klopp's side as City's only serious contenders.
Chelsea's strong start under new head coach Maurizio Sarri was dented by a humbling loss at Tottenham, who in turn saw their charge halted with a derby defeat at Arsenal last weekend.
Nevertheless, Van Dijk acknowledges there is a long way to go, with Liverpool and City not certain to be the two teams battling it out for the title at the end of the season.
"I don't see it as a two-horse-race," the Dutchman told ESPN. "If you look at everyone around us, Chelsea, Arsenal, then everyone has been doing brilliantly so far and it's going to be very interesting.
"It will be very difficult, but we need to look at ourselves. That's the only thing, what is best for us."
Liverpool is RED! pic.twitter.com/nl43Epz4pJ— Virgil van Dijk (@VirgilvDijk) December 2, 2018
Van Dijk helped Liverpool to a dramatic Merseyside derby victory against the Toffees, Divock Origi heading in from close range deep into added time at Anfield after Jordan Pickford fumbled a hopeful effort from the Netherlands centre-back.
Such late victories are often touted as a mark of potential champions, but Van Dijk is unwilling to get carried away with Liverpool's unbeaten start to the league season.
"I don't think it means anything at this point," he said. "The thing is, we have so many games still to play and so many difficult ones for everyone in the league.
"Obviously, we want to keep winning, keep doing what we're doing and we need to look at ourselves, that's the most important thing. Then we'll see if it's going to be close.
"We believe in each other, we know what we are capable of, we know we are very difficult to beat and very difficult to get a result from. But to score in the dying seconds if always something special, and especially in the Merseyside derby.
"Obviously, we all have a lot of ambitions, we all want to win things, but I think it's too early to look too far ahead. We just need to focus on the game that we have coming and don't look too far ahead."