Former Celtic striker Chris Sutton has been left drooling over Virgil van Dijk after the centre-back had a major impact since signing for Liverpool last month.
Van Dijk, 26, watched on from the bench against Porto on Tuesday as the back-line stood firm to earn a 0-0 draw at Anfield, which was good enough to see them qualify for the quarter finals of the Champions League thanks to a 5-0 win in the first leg.
The Netherlands international arrived at Anfield for big money in January, commanding a fee worth £75million and wages reported by the Telegraph to be £180,000-a-week.
And it seems that Sutton believes that van Dijk has been worth every penny thanks to how he has improved Liverpool’s rearguard.
However the former Blackburn and Chelsea striker admits he still has one worry – which is goalkeeper Loris Karius.
“This guy is a player. I’ve seen him play for numerous years for Celtic and then go down to Southampton and back then I was saying he was is every bit as good as John Stones – if not better,” said Sutton, as shown on EirSport’s official Twitter account.
“He has taken this Liverpool defence up a notch. He hasn’t been there long, granted, but he has everything.
“He can play, he can defend, he can head and he is a leader.”
He added: “The one area where I worry is the goalkeeper. I still don’t know whether he [Karius] is top drawer.”
— eir Sport (@eirSport) March 6, 2018
Football Insider verdict
Van Dijk is still settling down at Liverpool but his form has already improved from what it was at Southampton – which is very disappointing in a way. The Dutchman should have given his all at Southampton until the very end and now it seems clear that he just downed tools when he tried to force a move to Anfield. He will not be a very popular character among the Saints faithful because of this and no one can really blame them. If he had tried harder at the start of the season, maybe Southampton would not be facing the massive threat of relegation right now.