Liverpool are champions of Europe, they’ve won it six times, but still somehow the world keeps moving. The league season is over, but that means that it’s time for international football to begin.
On Thursday, plenty of Reds will likely take part as England and the Netherlands face each other in the Nations League semi-final on this Thursday evening. One player who will definitely be on the pitch is Virgil van Dijk, who is set to wear the captain’s armband for his country.
Ronald Koeman, the new Dutch boss, had plenty of praise for his incredible centre-half, rightfully naming him one of the best defenders on Earth.
“One of the best defenders,” Koeman replied. “I think maybe Pique at Barcelona, but he was also not playing well against Liverpool, but he is one of the two or three best defenders.”
Spoken like a man who didn’t see Barcelona travel to Anfield in the Champions League this season.
Koeman continued, “When you look at Virgil now, this is a big, big personality on the pitch. He is a leader. That was one of the reasons I made him captain of the national team. I knew him from Southampton. I thought, ‘he can do more – he can carry more responsibility.’
“He is strong, he has a great character and enjoys the responsibility. He is also a good boy.”
A good boy, indeed.