The best footballer in the world Lionel Messi has conceded that Virgil van Dijk was exceptionally difficult to play against, after their battle at Anfield last season.
The duo – along with Cristiano Ronaldo – were up for the FIFA’s best men’s player of the year award, and the Argentine was awarded the accolade.
But the Barcelona man has paid tribute to van Dijk in an interview with MARCA, after an entertaining two-legged battle in the Champions League.
“He is a defender that knows how to judge the timing and wait for the right moment to get in or hold on,” Messi told MARCA, as per the Metro.
“He is very fast and big, but he has a lot of agility for his height. He is fast because of its great stride and is impressive, both in defence and attack because he scores many goals.”
You love to see it when one of the world’s best players compliments another – and full respect to Messi, it can’t be easy to say nice things about a player who helped crush your dreams last year.
The Reds obviously went on to win the Champions League after the clash with Barcelona, and it’ll be entertaining to see how both us and Barcelona fare in this season’s iteration of the competition.