Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk has been confirmed to join Liverpool in the new year. Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp signed the Dutch international for a hefty £75m transfer fee. Now, he has beseeched Liverpool supporters to focus on van Dijk’s calibre as a player rather than the money paid. Klopp spoke about what the 26-year-old brings to the table. He said, “Quality. That’s why we got him, that’s why we were interested in him. It’s quite difficult at the moment because technically he’s still a Southampton player. We don’t make the prices, the market does. Liverpool supporters should forget about the price. We only talk about the player and what he can bring in; the quality, the mentality, the character. That is why we are really happy about it.”
Last summer, Van Dijk handed in a transfer request because he was interested in playing for them. He tried to force a move but Southampton accused the Reds for an alleged illegal approach. The Netherlands international made 12 appearances for the Saints this season. This was because he was recovering from a long-term knee injury. Meanwhile, Klopp has called for patience as he acclimatises to Liverpool’s style of play.
He said, “Virgil hasn’t had the best first half to the season at Southampton. He was out injured for a long time and we all know about the things that happened last summer. He’s a tall player – they always need a little bit longer especially after being out for around nine months – but that’s no problem. We already have quality here in that position so we don’t have to rush anything. He needs to adapt to our style of play. It’s a completely different game, but we are 100 per cent sure he will do it.”
Virgil van Dijk Statistics
The Dutchman has made 67 appearances in his 3 years in the Premier League. Off that, as mentioned earlier, he has only made 12 appearances in 2017-18. He has had 1 clean sheet, conceded 18 goals and performed 10 tackles. The 26-year old also has a tackle success rate of 70%. Virgil Van Dijk has 0 last man tackles and 2 blocked shots to his name. His credentials also include 29 interceptions and 78 clearances. Off those clearances, 50 have been headed clearances. However, he has not had any clearances Off Line. He also has 71 recoveries.
In terms of team play, he has 0 Assists which isn’t surprising since he’s a defender. He has completed 633 Passes with an average rate of 52.75 passes per match. Van Dijk has created 2 big chances and crossed just once. He has 0% cross accuracy and has completed 1 through ball. When it comes to long rang passes, he has had 36 accurate long balls.