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PREMIER LEAGUE

Van Dijk: Liverpool won't be satisfied with a draw against Manchester City

Liverpool have not discussed the possible merits of going out for a draw against title holders Manchester City, says Reds centre-back Virgil van Dijk.

Van Dijk: Fearless Liverpool focused only on beating Manchester City

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Virgil van Dijk claimed Liverpool do not feel fear and have no interest in holding Manchester City to a draw in their top-of-the-table Premier League encounter later today. Liverpool hold a six-point advantage over title rivals and defending champions City going into Sunday's highly anticipated showdown at Anfield. Preserving that buffer would ordinarily be seen as a reasonable outcome but the Premier League leaders will be wary of repeating the missed opportunities of last season.

Liverpool earned a point on Merseyside in October then lost 2-1 in the reverse fixture at the Etihad Stadium as City pipped the Reds to the title. Now, with the chance to surge further clear in first, Jürgen Klopp's Liverpool are not entertaining the prospect of settling for a point.

Liverpool have no fear

"That's something we are not going to think about, or discuss now whether a draw is good enough," central defender Van Dijk told reporters. "We want to win every game that we play and so it is Sunday of course, and they want to win as well. So we will see. I have no fear. You should not have fear when you go out on the pitch. That's not something that we feel. We know we have the quality to win games, but we have to be more than at our best at times, and hopefully for the full 90 minutes, and try to grind out games as well. I think we have been doing it in some games this season."

Liverpool bounced back from last season's domestic disappointment by claiming a sixth European crown with their triumph over Tottenham in the Champions League final. Van Dijk believes both events have helped them to become a stronger side.

Klopp's Reds seeing fruits of experience

"A lot of experience we had last year, winning the Champions League, getting so close to the Premier League, it's always going to benefit us in a good way," the centre-back said. "Winning the Champions League can get you up in the clouds but the manager, the staff, the players have the right mentality at the moment that we want to do it again, like other teams. Everyone knows how difficult it is but we are just going to go for it and see where it brings us at the end of the season. If it doesn't bring us what we want it to be, we will just try again next year. That's the mentality we have."