In what was perhaps the highlight of Liverpool’s 92-point Premier League season, a 5-0 triumph at Manchester United, Fabinho was stuck at home, some 50 miles away.
Fabinho sat on the bench due to a knee injury while Naby Keita, Jordan Henderson, and Curtis Jones (who replaced James Milner just before the break) tortured his United rivals in midfield.
After Mohamed Salah completed his hat trick to bring the score 5-0 with 40 minutes remaining last October at Old Trafford, the Brazil international was seen encouraging his teammates to inflict even more damage.
He jokes, “To be honest I wanted the team to attack more and score more goals!” in an interview promoting Monday night’s match at Old Trafford. “After Paul Pogba was sent off, we had an extra man on the field and attempted to take control of the game. As a fan, I was hoping they would score more goals because it was a chance to set a record at Old Trafford, but 5-0 is still a good result.
“Do you think I was yelling at the TV? The answer is “yes” in some cases. Sometimes we’re in a lighter mood than the players, but then you get it when you spend a lot of time on the field. I imagine the crowd enjoyed the 5-0 victory.”
Liverpool’s superiority over United was on full display in last season’s two meetings: a famous victory over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team in October, and a 4-0 thrashing of a team coached by Ralf Rangnick at Anfield in April.
They haven’t been beaten by their historic rivals in the Premier League since March of 2018, and Jurgen Klopp’s team has scored 13 times in their last three meetings with United. Last season’s match was watched by 3.6 million people in the United Kingdom, making it the most-watched football match in the globe, according to statistics and market measurement firm Nielsen of the United States.
On Monday night, the entire footballing world will be glued to Old Trafford to watch Liverpool take on Manchester United, and Fabinho will likely be a focal point for the Reds in the middle of the field as they look to get their season off to a winning start by piling on more misery for United, who have already lost their first two games of the season, to Brighton and Brentford.
NEW: Keita injury, Fabinho decision & more – 5 things from Klopp post-Man United loss https://t.co/oAcn6Id7VK
— This Is Anfield (@thisisanfield) August 22, 2022
Fabinho says in a conversation at the AXA Training Centre on a Friday morning, “It is always good to play in a big game like this.” “This, in my opinion, is England’s most important sporting event. That first game we played against each other will always stick out in my mind (in December 2018). I was on a roll, but beating them will give you a new perspective in the eyes of your fans and possibly the media.
Fabinho, one of the 23 players named to coach Dunga’s Copa América squad for the 2015 tournament in Chile, made his professional debut in a warm-up match on June 7 against Mexico, replacing Danilo at halftime of a 2-0 victory at Allianz Parque in So Paulo.
Fabinho did not see any action at the Copa América, despite Brazil’s impressive run to the quarterfinals. Dani Alves started every game at right back. Fabinho was named for Brazil’s Copa América Centenario squad, although he did not feature in any of Brazil’s three matches at the tournament.
Liverpool secured Fabinho’s services until 2026 by offering him a lengthy contract.
His first goal of the season came against Leeds United on September 12, 2021, and it was the second of a 3-0 victory.
Fabinho scored the second and fourth goals in a 4-1 third-round FA Cup victory over Shrewsbury Town on January 9, 2022. Despite Fabinho’s absence from the final matchday roster, Liverpool went on to defeat Chelsea 5-6 in a penalty shootout on May 15 to claim the title. The final match was tied 0-0 after regulation and extra time.
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