Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has sparked some serious debate after claiming that Virgil van Dijk’s solid season was the most ‘impressive’ campaign he’d seen by a defender ‘ever’.
Van Dijk has transformed Liverpool’s defence since his marquee arrival from Southampton. The Dutchman was integral in helping the Reds to two consecutive Champions League finals.
The 28-year-old finished second in the Ballon d’Or rankings last night. Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi was awarded the prestigious trophy for the sixth time in his career.
Take a look at what Klopp had to say on the Dutchman, courtesy of Telegraph reporter Chris Bascombe:
Klopp on ballon d'Or: “The decisions are made by journalists, right? I see it slightly different. Lionel Messi is probably best player I have seen in my life. But the last season I can not remember a more impressive season by a defender ever (than Virgil Van Dijk)”
— Chris Bascombe (@_ChrisBascombe) December 3, 2019
There’s no doubting that Van Dijk was formidable at the back last season, however these fans think that Klopp’s apparent claim that it was the ‘most impressive season ever’ from a defender is outlandish.
Over the last decade, the Dutchman’s solid season is certainly one of the best – he deserves credit for coming out on top after battling Messi over two legs.
Here’s how some football fans reacted to the Liverpool boss’ claim:
— Rony Yovel (@Yovelinho) December 3, 2019
— Hughes (@MUFCbmwbear) December 3, 2019
SERGIO RAMOS WIN THE UCL THREE TIMES IN A ROW NO BALLON D’OR FOR HIM SO MOVE ON
— Ahmed olasunkanmi (@Amole_1023) December 3, 2019
I’m sure pique won a domestic treble then the World Cup in 2010 ?????
— Danny Harris (@2DannyH) December 3, 2019
Because Maldini and Baresi at the back weren’t more impressive ? have a day off Klopp
— Jamie Hutchinson (@JHutchinson1993) December 3, 2019
Cannavaro also might have something to say about this
— Jack (@Jack_Smith333) December 3, 2019
Did Cannavaro play golf?
— KG (@xKG_180) December 3, 2019
Italy legend Fabio Cannavaro was the last defender to win the award, the former Real Madrid and Juventus star received the honour in 2006 after captaining his country to a World Cup triumph.
Cannavaro also helped Juventus secure a Serie A title, although this was later stripped following an investigation into a widespread match-fixing scandal in Italy.
In your opinion, which defender has had the most dominant season ever? Cannavaro, Ramos, Pique, Maldini – or would you go back further and hail someone like Franz Beckenbauer?