Daniel Agger spent his Valentine’s Day very much like we did: declaring his love for Virgil van Dijk as the ex-Southampton defender demonstrated exactly why he came with a £75m price tag. Agger watched the mid-week rout against Porto with his eldest son, and while it was Mané, Salah, and Firmino who claimed the goals, the former Red focused on just how great van Dijk has been for the team.
“I watched him play before and he is a really strong player,” Agger told the club’s official website. “Taking the step from Southampton to Liverpool is not always easy, but it’s impressive how he’s started. He looks like he’s going in and looks like he is in charge. As a defender, as a team, it’s important to have a man like that. It’s still early, but I hope he can bring the best out of those around him at the back.”
The fact that van Dijk has only played six games as a Red and has already become the bedrock of Liverpool’s defence is a testament to the Dutch international’s talent and skills. The fact that van Dijk makes defending look easy (and Karius feel more comfortable in goal) is a very, very welcome added bonus.
Agger, who dropped by Liverpool’s four-day training camp in Marbella because he’s a retired footballer and just hangs around Spain for fun, also touched on his own time as a defender and how glad he is that he never came up against Liverpool’s attack.
“Every time we’ve got the ball going forward, it’s dangerous,” Agger said. “It’s something that is so important for a team because no matter if you concede one or two, you know you have the power to get back [into the game].”
The team will be in Marbella over the weekend as they begin to prepare for West Ham, Newcastle, and the Porto return leg in the space of eleven days.