Jurgen Klopp blames Virgil van Dijk as Liverpool give up 3-1 lead in Aston Villa draw | Football | Sport

But it unravelled for Klopp’s side with five minutes left. There was little sign of danger when Van Dijk picked up the ball in his own area, but the Dutchman then needlessly put Alexis Mac Allister under pressure with a pass into the Argentinian while he was facing his own goal.

Callum Chambers duly dispossessed him after he turned into trouble, and the ball fell to Jhon Duran who fired a low shot home from the edge of the area. Just two minutes later the same player made it 3-3, diverting in Moussa Diaby’s pass to leave Alisson stranded in the Liverpool goal.

The late chaos followed Klopp making a quadruple substitution on the 75 minute mark, but afterwards the German boss argued the changes were necessary and pointed to Van Dijk’s error. “Before we changed, we gave them too many chances,” he told Sky Sports

“It was very intense for the boys. They created too much. They were too often in our box and we made the changes. Then we made a mistake. We shouldn’t have passed the ball there [to Mac Allister]. It happens but in that moment, it opens the door.”

Despite the late capitulation, the 56-year-old did declare him pleased with the display, but admitted his side struggled once Dhuran had reduced the deficit. “The character from the boys tonight was outstanding in our situation,” he added.

“We wanted to win the game. In the moment, when we gave away the 3-2, that was really tricky. That’s it, that’s the story of the game.”

There was one reason for Klopp to leave Villa Park a relieved man though. He began the night just one caution away from a touchline ban, and a yellow card would have confined him to the stands for his final game at Anfield on Sunday.

Instead, he’s now set for a rousing send-off when Liverpool host Wolves. On what is due to be am emotionally charged occasion, his side will kick-off the final game of his eight-and-a-half-year tenure with third place already assured.

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