Neil Lennon Told Us All Along About Virgil Van Dijk
The fee Liverpool are paying for Virgil Van Dijk has been a hot topic of conversation as we prepare for the opening of the January transfer window.
Big Deal, Big Dough
After they tried to sign him last summer it was clear he wanted to go there and I think it’s a big statement from Liverpool to sign him and he is the one they always wanted.
He’s turned down Chelsea and Manchester City to go to Anfield and he could have been on more money at either of those clubs. He wants to leave a legacy at Liverpool and to be considered a Liverpool great and I think that’s the vision that has been sold to him by Jurgen Klopp. I think you have to credit Klopp as there aren’t many managers who could sell the club in the way he has sold it to Virgil Van Dijk.
£75 million does appear like a lot of money of course but we know full well that in the current market it isn’t actually a lot of money and sides like Liverpool can cope with it given their commercial power and the sort of business they can generate so I think it’s a great signing for them.
He’s the one who Jurgen Klopp wanted; he said he didn’t want any other defender and in Van Dijk he’s got someone who has got everything. He can play, he’s quick, he’s strong and he’s excellent in the air.
The only thing is that Liverpool do play open and expansive football and when you play like that, defenders will get caught out whether your name is Virgil Van Dijk or Paolo Maldini.
But he does have the pace and the knowledge of the game to be able to plug gaps and fill in for teammates who are caught out of position.
It’s unbelievable the amount of talent Southampton have sold over the past ten years. Obviously they signed Van Dijk and,
some credit has to go Neil Lennon too who constantly told us how good Van Dijk was.
To be fair he has now proved himself in the Premier League.
But the likes of Adam Lallana spring to mind as someone they brought through the system and sold on for a big fee and even when they’ve brought in players like Van Dijk or the likes of Morgan Schneiderlin, they have been sold on for huge amounts of money.
An incredible amount of their transfer fees have been received from Liverpool of course but I think Liverpool have got great value for money in their business with Southampton and I believe that’s the case with Van Dijk.
To an extent I agree with Jamie Carragher saying that the Premier League has become a bit of a joke after Newcastle parked the bus against Man City. I’ve been in the position that Newcastle are in when you’re struggling for points in the Premier League and every single point means so much especially to a side in the relegation zone or who is hovering above the relegation zone.
I don’t necessarily see it as a joke though. I don’t think Jamie has been in that position himself so to be fair he probably sees it in a different way to me. City dominated the game and they should have won by more.
At the end of the season it might come down to goal difference and I stayed up in the league by scoring one more goal than Sheffield United. Ultimately I think that’s what Rafa Benitez was thinking of.