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Liverpool Legend Declares Van Dijk the Best Defender He’s Ever Seen

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Gary Gillespie may have a point.

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Sporting CP v Liverpool - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Gary Gillespie is a man who knows from a good defender. The former Liverpool player was around when the club saw some of its greatest successes. And he thinks that Virgil van Dijk is the bee’s knees.

“Normally it is the players that catch the eye, the players that score the goals, that dribble and beat people, that create opportunities and I think it speaks volumes that he’s even being talked about as winning the Ballon d’Or, the fact he’s a centre-back,” Gillespie said of van Dijk.

“For me, he’s the best [defender] I’ve seen, absolutely. He’s right up there, outstanding in every department [and] in one-on-one situations, and that’s so key these days, with the way that modern teams play.

“Sometimes you are left in one-on-one situations and you just need to look at his stats last season: I think they were that not one player dribbled past him. I just think that’s phenomenal.”

The season hasn’t even begun yet, but praise for the Netherlands captain is already pouring in from all sides. His impressive, PFA Player of the Year-winning campaign last season has lead to high expectations this time around, as the Reds target that coveted league trophy.

Hopefully the best years are still to come for the indominable, 28-year-old centre-back, and they’re going to be all Liverpool’s.