London, Jan 6: The FA Cup third round had the Merseyside Derby as its biggest game on Friday night and the game turned out to be a complete delight for the Liverpool fans.
The Reds boss Jurgen Klopp named the club's record signing and world's most expensive defender Virgil van Dijk in the starting XI and the Dutchman made his arrival known with not only a solid display at the back but also by scoring the winner.
It is a dream come true for a player to score on his debut but defenders very rarely get such an occasion to celebrate. Van Dijk made such an achievement in a game that matters the most for the fans, the local derby against their bitter rivals.
In an FA Cup tie that had everything – including controversy when Roberto Firmino and Mason Holgate almost came to blows after words were exchanged just before halftime – it was the Dutchman who had the last word and broke Everton's hearts.
Here are the talking points from the game that ended 2-1 in the Reds' favour:
Virgil van Dijk is a special player
Virgil van Dijk, on his debut, not only won the game by scoring the winner late in the game but also impressed in the areas for which he was signed. The Dutchman dominated at the back and his leadership was evident as well.
Just when his side needed an inspiration from someone to get the vital win when it was looking that the game was heading for a replay, it was him who made the difference from the corner beating Everton keeper Pickford.
Sigurdsson should be played at number ten
Iceland international Gylfi Sigurdsson was mostly silent till he was playing on the left but the substitution of Wayne Rooney changed the game completely for Everton.
The former Spurs man scored a brilliant goal and looked very productive as soon as he shifted centrally and Big Sam should play him more in that role.
FA Cup is a special competition
The game showed precisely how important a competition the FA Cup is.
The commitment of both teams and the desire to win showed it really means something to both, and it also presents most sides an opportunity to win a silverware.