The Reds served up a superb set-piece routine that paid dividends in the second half and looked to have brought the game's first goal.
The ball was whipped in beautifully by Trent Alexander-Arnold from the right and found the unmarked Sadio Mane, who headed back across for Joel Matip to nod in.
Joël Matip is *almost* Liverpool's unlikely hero 👀— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) February 27, 2022
The Reds' joy is short-lived as their goal is ruled out by VAR 📺 pic.twitter.com/cACBhQUfUc
Van Dijk had blocked off Reece James to get Mane the free run on the left in what was a clever piece of play to create the opening.
However, the Dutch defender strayed offside and after referee Stuart Attwell went to the VAR monitor, the goal was chalked off.
While Van Dijk was not directly involved in the sense that he didn't touch the ball, his action was deemed to be an act of affecting the play.
The incident was eerily similar to one involving Harry Maguire against Burnley earlier this month.
Same thing happened at Burnley recently with Harry Maguire #CarabaoCupFinal— Darren Fletcher (@DFletcherSport) February 27, 2022
Exactly the same situation as Harry Maguire at Burnley.— Alex Shaw (@AlexShawESPN) February 27, 2022
Raphael Varane headed home against the Clarets at Turf Moor but United skipper Maguire was in an offside position and adjudged to have interfered by blocking off Jay Rodriguez.
Maguire disagreed with the decision and said at the time he didn't think Rodriguez "would have affected the goal".
He told BT Sport: "He said it wasn't a foul. Interfering with play, I don't know. I actually made my run earlier and it didn't end up being a little bit of a block. I don't think Rodriguez would have affected the goal from which Rafa scored."
Featured Image Credit: Image: Sky Sports
- "It's easy..." - Virgil van Dijk responds to brutal criticism over World Cup display
- Virgil van Dijk fires back at Marco van Basten's brutal criticism after Netherlands draw against Ecuador
- Virgil van Dijk was not Liverpool's best defender last season, says Micah Richards
- Virgil Van Dijk Went Alpha Mode When Antonio Rudiger Squared Up To Him - Fabinho Couldn't Stop Laughing