Liverpool fans react as van Dijk returns to training for the first time in nine months

Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk has returned to training – and Reds fans are understandably delighted.

Van Dijk suffered anterior cruciate ligament damage in the Merseyside Derby against Everton last October. He was ruled out for the remainder of the season.

Joe Gomez, meanwhile, also suffered a serious knee injury on England duty a few weeks later. It was diagnosed as a knee tendon injury, but Gomez did avoid ligament damage.

However, he was also ruled out for the remainder of the season.

Then, to further compound Liverpool’s misery, fellow centre-back Joel Matip suffered ankle ligament damage in February. He has not featured since.

All three were back in training on Tuesday as Liverpool’s pre-season training camp began in Austria.

Also present was Trent Alexander-Arnold, who missed Euro 2020 due to a thigh injury.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said that van Dijk and Gomez both “look really good”. He told the club’s official website: “They look really good. I don’t exactly when we can make the next steps but it will happen in the next four weeks.

“For sure, we will get a big step forward.”

Van Dijk tweeted a video of his return to training. It shows him walking into the session before quickly getting involved with teammates.

He captioned the tweet: “This feeling!”

Liverpool fans react to van Dijk return

For Liverpool, the absence of van Dijk was especially sorely felt.

Since joining the Reds in January 2018, he has established himself as one of the Premier League‘s leading centre-backs.

He won the PFA Players’ Player of the Year award in 2018/19. A few months later, he was placed as runner-up for the 2019 Best FIFA Men’s Player.

In the two seasons before his injury, the Dutchman had featured in every Premier League game.

And Reds fans were delighted to see the dominating defender back in training.

Here’s how they reacted to his return:

Liverpool kick off their 2021/22 Premier League campaign against newly-promoted Norwich on August 14.

That game will take place at Carrow Road, with a 5:30 pm kick-off.

Featured Image Credit: Getty