Virgil van Dijk says the Liverpool players “still feel” the fans despite Jurgen Klopp’s men preparing to face Crystal Palace behind closed doors at Anfield on Wednesday night.
The towering centre-back has admitted it will be strange to play at an empty Anfield, but says things can still be “cool” if the players really offer their best against Roy Hodgson’s Palace.
The Premier League has resumed ti empty stadiums after the lockdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic. And Liverpool struggled to get into full flow in their opener against Everton at Goodison Park.
Van Dijk though has promised a top effort from the Reds as they close in on their first top-flight title for 30 years and believes the players can still feel their fan base even though they are watching on from their homes
“The supporters not being there will be so strange,” he told the Official Liverpool FC matchday programme. “Particularly as our supporters are so important to us. But, like so much in this time, we have to make the best of it.
“The supporters haven’t disappeared, they will just be somewhere else. We know we will have millions of people watching us from their homes so we still have the responsibility to perform for them and ourselves.
“The whole world has had to make sacrifices in the last three months or more and unfortunately the way things are at the moment means we play at the stadium and the supporters watch from their homes. But we have a strong enough connection to our fans to know they’ll be with us for every kick, header, pass, shot and save.
“It’s not that Liverpool fans aren’t around anymore – they just have to watch from home. I think we can still make this cool if we all really give our best. We’ll do that as players.
“The supporters know we feel them still. I really hope we can help bring some joy with what we do on the pitch. That will be a motivation for us.”