In the not too distant past, the names of Liverpool players were largely left out of best-of conversations, unless that name was Suarez. Since the arrival of Jürgen Klopp there’s been an influx of exceptional players to Melwood, though, and the team Liverpool have quite a few world-class athletes now that get to be compared and judged on a daily basis. Still there’s one name that rises above them all. Virgil Van Dijk.
Van Dijk’s name was recently invoked by legendary AC Milan defender Franco Baresi in a best-of world defenders conversation. Baresi played for the Italian giants for 20 years, captaining the Rossoneri for 15 seasons, and knows a fair share about defending.
Asked about the current defenders plying their trade in the game, the Italian was non-committal but still managed to hand out some kudos to Van Dijk.
“It is difficult to make comparisons,” said Baresi.
“I like Van Dijk and De Ligt, they are both very strong and very athletic.
“Liverpool have grown hugely as a team recently and a lot of that is thanks to Van Dijk.”
Poor Alisson just doesn’t get the accolades that Van Dijk does for Liverpool’s defensive strength this season. But if the Brazilian keeper what’s to grow out his mane and start putting the muscle on defenders, maybe he’ll finally start to get noticed.
Regardless of football allegiance, Van Dijk is considered one of the best defenders in the world right now and his name is spoken and written along with Liverpool countless times every day. It’s another sign of Liverpool’s return to the business end of the game and I’m here for it.