Virgil van Dijk returns for Liverpool FC nine months after serious knee injury

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 (Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Virgil van Dijk has made his return to action for Liverpool in a friendly against Hertha Berlin.

The 30-year-old defender had been out for nine months after suffering a serious knee injury and featured as a substitute during the pre-season game in Austria on Thursday.

Van Dijk came on after 70 minutes and came through the final 20 minutes.

He had been out since suffering an anterior cruciate ligament injury in his right knee during a Merseyside derby against Everton last October.

Van Dijk said on Twitter: “285 days ago, I started on a journey back towards playing. It’s hard to express how I am feeling, but it’s important to me that I say I feel blessed to have had the support of so many incredible people.

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“The surgeon, my physios, coaches and staff who have been with me in my corner since day one. My teammates for giving me energy and keeping my head up. The fans for their love, support and encouragement.

“And most of all, my family because without them, I’d be nothing. Thank you. The work doesn’t stop now. It’s only just starting. We keep going!”

Van Dijk also tweeted a picture of an excerpt from the bible - Isaiah’s ‘path of the righteous’.

Joe Gomez also returned from a knee injury after eight months out in another welcome sight for Liverpool, who lost the match 4-3 at the Tivoli Stadion in Innsbruck.

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Joel Matip has also returned from injury during pre-season.

Liverpool kick off the 2021-22 Premier League season away at Norwich City on August 14 when Van Dijk will hope to make his first competitive appearance for what will then have been 10 months.

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