Liverpool star Virgil van Dijk has been praised by Micah Richards, who believes the Reds centre-back could go on to “be the greatest ever” in his position.
The Dutchman joined Liverpool back in 2017 for a £75million fee, a world record sum for a defender at the time and still second in the all-time rankings.
There was criticism from some quarters due to the huge fee spent on Van Dijk, but it didn’t take long before it looked like money well spent.
In a short space of time, he helped transform a shaky Liverpool defence into a solid, tight-knit unit which went on to win the Champions League, Premier League and Club World Cup.
Van Dijk is currently recovering from a long-term anterior cruciate ligament injury suffered in the Merseyside derby last October, and his absence has been felt by the Anfield side.
This week, Richards, Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker have been discussing the best centre-halves to play in the Premier League in the latest Match of the Day: Top 10 podcast.
And Van Dijk made the cut, with Shearer listing him at number four and Richards ranking him at number five.
“He could be the greatest ever,” Richards said, as quoted by the BBC Sport website.
“Maybe it’s getting a bit late now in terms of age and he’s had his injury but he had an instant impact.
“There’s no question marks over him, he can do everything. I can’t believe when he was at Celtic that Manchester City didn’t take a little punt on him.”
There can be little doubt that Van Dijk is currently one of the best defenders in world football, if not the very best.
It’s worth remembering how shaky the Reds defence was prior to his arrival, and how it’s not been particularly great in his absence either.
Van Dijk seems to be progressing well in his recovery, having been filmed jogging in training, and hopefully it won’t be long before he’s back on the pitch.