Former Dutch international and treble winning Manchester United defender Jaap Stam has lauded Liverpool’s no.4 Virgil van Dijk, labelling his countryman as ‘maybe even better’ than he was – which will likely irk fans of the Old Trafford club!
Van Dijk was recently named the 2nd best player in the world via the Ballon d’Or vote, making him the first defender to reach the podium since Fabio Cannavaro in 2006.
His presence in our backline helped us win the Champions League last season, collect 97 points in the Premier League and go on unbeaten start in our quest for domestic glory this term.
“That’s very important as a football player if you want to play in the highest leagues and the biggest clubs.
“Positioning yourself is very important. In possession and also out of possession because it helps you a lot. You get times to do things and he’s doing a fantastic job.”
Stam was a terrific defender, as was Nemanja Matic, John Terry, Rio Ferdinand, Sol Campbell and many other big name Premier League defenders from the start of the 21st Century.
But for us, van Dijk is better than all of them. He’s a better passer, has more composure and is unrivalled in terms of strength and speed.
On Saturday, Liverpool racked up our first clean-sheet in 15 games, thanks to van Dijk and Joe Gomez at the back.
We think that partnership may now get a run, considering Joel Matip’s injury and Dejan Lovren’s withdrawal on Saturday.