Robin Propper has shared his admiration for Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk, insisting he had a lot to learn from the No.4.
The FC Twente skipper was keen to emphasise his compatriot’s style in 1v1 duels with opponents, with the former Southampton man perhaps best demonstrating his positional awareness in one contest with Lautaro Martinez yesterday.
“I really see Virgil van Dijk as an example,” the Dutchman said, as reported by Twente Fans (via Sport Witness).
“He is so calm on the ball, a real leader. When Marco van Basten talked to Matthijs de Ligt last week about defending with loose cheeks, I didn’t know exactly what he meant, but when you look at Van Dijk, you immediately understand.
“The way he fights the duels with his opponent is beautiful to see. Setting up the team and reacting to certain situations that’s something I can learn a lot from Van Dijk.”
The 30-year-old has been a transformative signing for the Reds alongside Alisson Becker, helping catapult Jurgen Klopp’s men into the stratosphere of European football.
What has perhaps gone under the radar for some is the remarkable speed with which the centre-half has recovered from a serious ACL injury incurred last term and rediscovered his best form.
Few would have been surprised to see a potential loss of pace or hesitance going into duels, yet it would appear that the Dutch international has not compromised in either area.
The good news for Liverpool fans is that he hardly seems anywhere near close either to a drop in performance levels, which is a comforting thought when looking into the future beyond the Klopp regime.