Luis Diaz doesn’t want Liverpool pals to suffer too while father’s held hostage

Virgil van Dijk has revealed how Luis Diaz wants his plight to be motivation for his Liverpool team-mates.

Diaz's parents were seized at gunpoint on October 28 but, while his mother was found, his dad, Luis Manuel, is still missing.

The Liverpool winger scored a vital equaliser in stoppage-time against Luton on Sunday before revealing a t-shirt that said ‘Freedom for my father’. Diaz then put out a statement calling on his father’s captors to release him.

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It has been a tortuous time for the Liverpool forward but Van Dijk has revealed how Diaz is ensuring it doesn’t have a negative impact on the team.

He said: “Difficult to perform? No. Obviously when it happened, before the last game against Nottingham, it was a shock to everyone and we spoke about it but it should give us extra motivation.

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“He doesn't want us to suffer from what he is going through. He wants to take fuel from it and that's what we all know.”

Liverpool players have been ensuring Diaz is coping with the serious situation as he came off the bench to rescue a point against the Premier League new boys.

“I am glad and it must have been [written] that he should score anyway,” said Van Dijk. “You know I am happy for him but hopefully we can get his father back as soon as possible. You can't imagine it.

“That is the scary part of it, the only thing we can do is hope that the authorities and the people there manage to find him safe and sound, get him back to his family and we pray for him as well.”

Liverpool dropped two points at Kenilworth Road but Van Dijk refused to blame the officials. Kop boss Jurgen Klopp bemoaned ‘wrestling’ in the box which saw Van Dijk hauled to the ground before Luton’s goal and then there was a potential handball by Ross Barkley before the start of their counter attack.

He added: “I can't speak about the decisions but I headed the ball and it came against his elbow apparently, I think, I don't know. Obviously the counter attack starts and they look if it's a penalty yes or no, they decide it's not. It's quite a good advantage for them, obviously they start a counter-attack and they score from it.

“So you know I don't know the rules exactly in this case but it shouldn't come to a decision if it's a penalty or not to get a good result. I think we had the opportunities ourselves to get a good result and we didn't do it. The same as the wrestling moment before that. He can give it but he didn't.”

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