‘We knew when we signed him we’d get a really good player’: Jurgen Klopp insists Virgil van Dijk needs no further praise after playing EVERY minute for Liverpool in the Premier League this season… but believes the centre-back has exceeded expectations
- Virgil van Dijk was an ever-present fixture in Liverpool’s top-flight campaign
- He helped the Reds end their 30-year wait for a top-flight title this season
- The Dutchman also scored on the final day by netting against Newcastle
- Reds boss Jurgen Klopp has been impressed by his mindset and manner too
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp cheekily insisted it was not necessary to praise Virgil van Dijk any further after playing every Premier League minute for champions Liverpool this season.
Van Dijk was an ever-present fixture in the Liverpool side in the Premier League this campaign as they ended their 30-year wait for a top-flight title, finishing 18 points clear of previous title-holders Manchester City.
The feat was a repeat of last season, when the Dutch international also started each match as City pipped the Reds to be crowned champions on the final day.
Jurgen Klopp cheekily insisted Virgil Van Dijk needs no more praise after playing every minute
Van Dijk was an ever-present in Liverpool’s Premier League season as they won the title
The 29-year-old has become one of the league’s and the world’s most accomplished defenders after signing for the Anfield club from Southampton for £75million in January 2018, yet Klopp has been just as impressed by his mindset and manner.
‘I’m not sure if he needs another hour of praise,’ Klopp told reporters after Van Dijk scored the opener against Newcastle in a 3-1 final-day win. ‘He’s good, pretty good. He’s a good centre-half.
‘No, he’s special, his combination of skills is special, his mindset – on top of that – is special.
Van Dijk also scored on the final day of this season by netting the opener against Newcastle
‘This makes him a pretty good centre-half and a good guy as well, which I like a lot. I would work with him as well if he was a little more difficult to be with, but he’s really low maintenance.
‘He’s really nice to have. We knew when we signed him we’d get a really good player, but the package is so special, and we had no idea about that. That makes him really, really exciting.’
Speaking about van Dijk’s record as an ever-present member in the side, the German added with a smile: ‘He takes his breaks in the games from time to time, which drives me crazy.
But Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has admitted van Dijk has surpassed expectations at the club
‘But I get it, I get it. It was his big target, I think, that he could do that again. Hopefully that will be possible for the rest of his career. That would be absolutely special.
‘We’ve tried to rest him but it’s difficult. So far, it’s went well, and we hope it stays like this, but now he has two weeks off as well, so he doesn’t need more, I’m sure.’
Furthermore, when asked how he might describe Liverpool’s season, Klopp settled on ‘absolutely exceptional’.
The German has been just as impressed by his mindset as he has with his consistency