Virgil van Dijk has officially announced that he won’t be going to the European Championships this summer due to wanting to focus fully on getting back to full fitness for Liverpool in time for next season.
The Dutchman will no doubt be a big miss for the Netherlands at the Euros, but it’s probably a sensible decision from him not to risk himself there after missing so much of this campaign.
Van Dijk has been out ever since suffering a bad injury in the game with Everton at the start of the season, and his absence has hit Liverpool hard.
Although the Reds ran away with the Premier League title last season, they’ve not really been in the race at all this year and might not even finish in the top four.
Van Dijk returning next season could make all the difference for Liverpool, so it’s good news for them that he’ll have the summer off.
Speaking to Liverpool’s official site, Van Dijk said: “As you say, seven months ago I got injured and it’s been a very, very long road.
“I had to take it step by step, as I have done. Things have been going well, I’ve not had a real setback or anything, I’ve just progressed nicely.
“In this latest stage for myself, I have come to a decision that I had to make: would I be involved in the Euros, yes or no? With everything that is going on, I feel physically it is the right decision that I’ve decided not to go to the Euros and to go into my last phase of rehab during the off-season.
“So, the full focus will be on pre-season with the club and that’s a realistic goal, so I am looking forward to that.
“Obviously I am very gutted to miss the Euros, to miss the European Championship and leading out my own country there, but things have been like they have and I have to accept it – we all have to accept it.
“I think the decision to not go is the right decision in the grand scheme of things. It’s tough, but I’m at peace with it.”
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