Wayne Rooney slams Liverpool star for ‘worrying’ comments after Everton defeat

Joe Williams
Wayne Rooney on Liverpool
Wayne Rooney during his role as a TV pundit.

Wayne Rooney has hit out at Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk for moaning about their kick-off time ahead of their next match against West Ham on Saturday.

Despite having lots of chances to score themselves, the Reds lost 2-0 to Everton in the Merseyside derby on Wednesday night.

Jurgen Klopp’s last visit to Goodison Park ended in his first defeat there, having previously won two and drawn five, after goals from Jarrad Branthwaite and Dominic Calvert-Lewin left their chances of overhauling both their Premier League title rivals in tatters.

Liverpool – who are negotiating to bring in Feyenoord boss Arne Slot as Klopp’s successor in the summer – are now three points adrift of leaders Arsenal – who have a far superior goal difference – while Manchester City are one point behind them but have two games in hand.

Wayne Rooney: That’s part of your job, get on with it!

Van Dijk did give an honest assessment of Liverpool’s poor performance, criticising their poor showing at Goodison, but Rooney was frustrated by his comments about kick-off times.

Speaking on Sky Sports, Van Dijk referenced their next match against West Ham on Saturday which kicks off at 12.30pm, he said: “Now it’s time to focus on the 12.30pm kick-off again.”

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Before bringing it up again later in the interview: “Now we have to pick ourselves up and be ready for an early kick-off on Saturday again.”

Former Manchester United forward Rooney interrupted Sky Sports host Kelly Cates to make his feelings clear on Van Dijk’s post-match comments about kick-off times.

Rooney said: “Sorry, I think the worrying thing there is – and I think it’s happened a lot throughout the season as well – he’s the captain and he’s saying about Liverpool getting out-fought.

“But, again, we’re hearing about 12.30pm kick-offs after he’s just lost a derby!

“Now he, and that whole Liverpool team, should be wanting to be on the pitch tomorrow morning to get the next game going.

“Because when you lose a game – especially a derby game – you want the next game to come quick.

“And, again, we’ve heard it so, so many times this season with Liverpool about 12.30pm kick-offs. Get on with it! That’s part of your job, get on with it! And he should be ready to play.”

📣 TO THE COMMENTS! How do Van Dijk’s comments contrast with the Mentality Monsters of old?  Join the debate

Jurgen Klopp apologises to the Liverpool fans

Outgoing Liverpool boss Klopp apologised to fans after their defeat in the Merseyside derby, he said: “I can only apologise for today to the people. It is very disappointing.

“We played the game Everton wanted and they scored two goals from set-pieces. We should have done better but we didn’t.

“No good thoughts at all. Very disappointed and frustrated. It was not good enough.

“It was not the most inspired performance of all time, I really feel for the people. We never lost here (it was Everton’s first Goodison derby win in almost 14 years) and it feels really different. I really apologise for that.

“I can’t say now that we are still fully in it; we need a crisis at Man City and Arsenal and need to win football games because if they start losing all their games and we do what we did tonight nothing changes.

“We are not safe in the Champions League as well so we should just play better football.

“It is not a problem of attitude or what the boys want. No one is doing that on purpose.

“It is my job to bring them into a situation where they feel confident to do that. That part I am responsible and I am responsible for what happened tonight.

“It is not that I feel great, that is the most tricky part of football obviously. In the moment it didn’t work out and we have to keep trying.”

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