Frank McAvennie has highlighted the importance of Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk following the Reds’ 3-0 victory over Leeds United at the weekend, pointing to the defender’s “fear factor”.
Jurgen Klopp’s men’s latest win saw them collect a further three points to take them to the top of the league table, jointly, albeit, beside Everton, Chelsea and Manchester United.
“They looked like they did when they won the league, we didn’t see that enough last season,” the Glaswegian told Football Insider.
“Leeds are by no means an easy team to beat and the defence held up well.
“If Van Dijk wasn’t there, like last season, I think that game would have gone differently.
“Teams are terrified of him, there’s a fear factor, they try and avoid him and that breaks up attacks. It’s great to see.
“His influence cannot be overstated, it’s unbelievable.”
Having surprised fans and pundits alike with his start in the club’s opening clash of the season against Norwich City, the Dutchman has come on leaps and bounds in his general recovery, looking increasingly like his former world-class self.
There’s absolutely no questioning the value our No.4 brings to the side, not just simply in instilling a sense of invulnerability in the backline but also in contributing to our offensive efforts further afield with his ludicrous passing range.
Any side in Europe would suffer greatly without a player of Van Dijk’s calibre and keeping the Dutch international fit for the season will be key to our hopes of bringing back major silverware to Merseyside.