Dion Dublin insists Virgil van Dijk has enough talent to be able to flourish in a central midfield role with Liverpool.
The defender strutted to another flawless performance in Sunday’s win over Manchester United to continue his imperious start to the season.
It is coming up to 12 months since the Reds forked out £75million to make him the most expensive defender in history, in which time he has fully justified his price-tag.
His unflinching authority both with and without the ball at the back has proven instrumental in Jurgen Klopp’s side maintaining their unbeaten start to the Premier League.
It’s for his expertise as a deep-lying distributor that Dublin feels he could do a job in a slightly higher role.
Speaking on Sky Sports’ The Debate, he said: “I think he could play in central midfield, easily. He’s an out-and-out footballer. He’s got such a good footballing brain that he could play in midfield.”
“It’s a bit easier for him at the back because he’s got that rock element, but in midfield, he’s got good enough feet to play these little one-twos and pick a pass. So much in his locker.”
⚽Could Virgil van Dijk excel in midfield?⚽@DionDublinsDube thinks the Liverpool defender is more than capable.
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) December 17, 2018
His duel with Romelu Lukaku laid claim to his superiority of late as he out-manoeuvred and out-muscled the Belgian striker into a state of isolation. By the time Xherdan Shaqiri had fired his second and Liverpool’s third, United’s no.9 was hiding from the action.
The Dutchman’s commanding presence and leadership has been key in granting Klopp the freedom to implement a more calculated and efficient approach.
Though Klopp will have no intention of shifting him into a new position, you can’t help but feel he could dictate midfield with the same grace and composure.