ON Wednesday evening, simply as followers throughout the nation had been recovering from a gluttony of an excessive amount of turkey and chocolate, Liverpool introduced a deal to signal Virgil van Dijk from Southampton for £75million.
The deal makes him the world’s most costly defender and he’ll be part of his new team-mates at Anfield on January 1.
This ends the Reds’ lengthy battle to get a deal over the road, and now the strain will probably be on the 26-year-old to enhance Jurgen Klopp’s defensive position.
Our pals at Soccer Whispers ponder who will probably be picked to start out alongside their new signing.
The Cameroonian has arguably been Liverpool’s most spectacular centre-back. Arriving from Schalke on a free switch, he has undoubtedly improved the defence, however his absences have left them brief.
Having a really succesful and commanding accomplice can solely assist Matip enhance additional and let the 26-year-old take his sport to a different degree.
He leads all others in tackles received and interceptions made.
‘FORGET ABOUT IT’ Jurgen Klopp tells Liverpool followers not to consider Virgil van Dijk’s large £75million price ticket
He already averages a excessive variety of passes per sport, with 71.1, finishing 89.5 per cent.
Van Dijk can also be extraordinarily comfy in possession and it ought to assist Liverpool management the ball far more successfully.
Ever since arriving, additionally from Southampton, the Croatian has been one of the crucial polarising figures at Anfield.
On occasion he’ll put in a efficiency the place you suppose he has the standard wanted, however then primary, very avoidable errors put him within the highlight as soon as once more.
Averaging one sort out received per sport, he wins extra headers and makes extra clearances than Matip, however it’s the lapses in focus which let the 28-year-old down.
With Van Dijk within the squad, the strain on Lovren to guide the defence ought to relax and possibly assist get the very best out of the previous Lyon defender.
The Estonian centre-back is 32 years outdated, he was by no means going to be Klopp’s long-term answer on the coronary heart of the defence. But, when referred to as upon, the previous Augsburg man has been reliable when others haven’t.
This season he has made as many interceptions per sport as Lovren and commits the fewest fouls out of the 4 gamers we in contrast.
His numbers are spectacular, he completes extra passes per sport than Matip and has the very best completion proportion within the Liverpool squad. Klavan can be an ready accomplice to the Dutch defender.
The 20-year-old defender has made 16 appearances at right-back for the Reds’ this time period.
Though centre-back is deemed his most pure function, the England worldwide has impressed in Klopp’s back-line.
His statistics measure up properly, however it exhausting to get a real gauge with out him being chosen as a centre-back by Klopp.
Trent Alexander-Arnold and Nathaniel Clyne are additionally difficult for minutes in the identical place.
Ultimately, Gomez’s long-term future might be preventing for minutes within the coronary heart of the defence.
Georginio Wijnaldum and Emre Can
In opposition to Brighton, the German coach, affected by accidents on the again, moved to play Three-Four-Three and requested the midfield pair to flank Lovren in defence.
It labored surprisingly properly and it’s an experiment which may work once more if the state of affairs introduced itself.
Van Dijk can be a a lot stronger possibility within the centre and the tactical transfer may catch different Premier League golf equipment off-guard.
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