Paul Robinson insisted Virgil van Dijk is as important to Liverpool as Vincent Kompany was to Man City and should be handed a new seven-year contract. 

The former Spurs goalkeeper, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, claimed the 28-year-old’s fitness and physique can enable him to play at the top level until the age of 35.

Football Insider has revealed that the Reds about to begin talks over a new deal for Van Dijk worth £50m in wages and bonuses.

The Netherlands international arrived for £70million in January 2018 from Southampton and won the PFA Player of the Year in his first full season at Anfield.

Robinson urged sporting director Michael Edwards to hand the centre-half improved terms despite having three years left on his current contract.

“I would give him a five-year deal right now – with the option of a further two,” he told Football Insider.

“Van Dijk is extremely fit and strong. Look at Ronaldo – the age he is playing onto and the level he is playing at. He is 28, I would have no hesitation giving him a contract until he is 35.

“The impact he has had on the team and the players around him, even if he gets to 35 and is not playing regularly, to have somebody like that around the dressing room… You compare it to Vincent Kompany. You look at Manchester City and the impact he had even when he did not play – the difference of having a captain and a leader in the dressing room.

“I would tie him down for as long as possible.”   

Kompany captained City to four Premier League titles during his 11-year stay at the Eithad.

Van Dijk looks all but certain to help Jurgen Klopp’s side to a first-ever Premier League title a year on from being crowned champions of Europe.

In other Liverpool news, it can be REVEALED Jurgen Klopp has told Michael Edwards his number one priority this summer.