When Sami Hyypiä compliments a centre-back, Liverpool fans understand what that means. And the former Liverpool captain and forever Liverpool legend has some high praise for the Reds’ current superstar defender, Virgil van Dijk.
“I saw it right away when he came that he would be a very important part of the team,” Hyypiä told Press Association Sport.
“Straightaway he was organising the defence, he was the leader at the back, and as time has gone on he is even more important. He gives confidence to the players and makes many other players play better.
“It is very difficult to find a weakness. He is an ultimate centre-back and it would be a pleasure to play alongside him he is so good.
“He is so calm on the ball, he never seems in a hurry and he trusts his skills on the ball. It was the right decision [to sign him] because he is so important for the team, it doesn’t matter how much he cost.”
Van Dijk’s Liverpool hello was scoring the winning goal against Everton to advance the Reds into the next round of the FA Cup. Why, hello, sir.
And he hasn’t stopped impressing since, helping to make Liverpool’s back line one of the most formidable in the world. His heavy price tag seems like spare change now when you look at the results he’s garnered on the pitch.
Liverpool made it to the Champions League final with him marshaling the defence, and look to push on past the Round of 16 this season when they take on Bayern Munich on Tuesday.