Martin Keown has credited Virgil van Dijk with rekindling the “art of defending” at Liverpool FC, adding that the Dutch centre-half deserves the PFA player of the year award.
The Reds talisman has been instrumental in Liverpool FC’s title challenge this season as Jurgen Klopp looks to steer the Merseyside outfit to their first-ever Premier League crown.
Van Dijk has managed to transform the Liverpool FC defence from the leakiest in the top six to the best in the top flight in less than 12 months.
Liverpool FC were initially criticised for making Van Dijk the world’s most expensive defender after the Reds paid a £75m transfer fee to Southampton in January 2018.
However, the 27-year-old didn’t take long to silence his critics as Liverpool FC reached the Champions League final last term before Loris Karius’ errors culminated in a 3-1 loss to Real Madrid.
Liverpool FC have conceded a mere 18 goals in 31 games in the Premier League, while Alisson Becker has kept 17 clean sheets.
Former Arsenal defender Keown believes Van Dijk is the leading candidate to win the PFA player of the year award.
“Raheem Sterling has my respect but Van Dijk has my vote,” Keown told Daily Mail.
“Not since John Terry in 2004-05 has a defender won the award. The art of defending seemed to have disappeared but Van Dijk has rekindled it with Liverpool.”
Liverpool FC finished in fourth place in the last two Premier League seasons under Klopp to secure regular Champions League football.
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