Pundit issues 'big' Virgil van Dijk verdict after Liverpool reveal via DAZN
Alan Hutton has claimed Virgil van Dijk is “a big player” for Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp needs him to rediscover his best form quickly.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Tottenham and Aston Villa right-back said the Reds high line is reliant on the 31-year-old covering for his teammates.
Van Dijk has struggled for Liverpool in the opening stages of the season and has already conceded two penalties.
Speaking to DAZN (8 September), Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar said it is “tough” to play against the Dutchman.
The Brazilian added that Van Dijk is a “strong” and “intelligent” defender.
When asked if the Liverpool boss could give the defender a rest, Hutton told Football Insider: “Maybe but I don’t see it to be quite honest with you with the problems they’ve got at the back.
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“I think, at times, he gets left exposed with the way they play. Such a high line, Trent [Alexander-Arnold] playing high, he’s playing alongside all different sorts of partners whether it be [Joel] Matip, [Joe] Gomez, [Ibrahim] Konate, it changes from week to week and I don’t think that helps.
“As fans, we all look at him as being one of the best defenders in the world so when he does dip in form there’s big question marks over him. He’s not right, he’s not got over the injury, what’s wrong with him, there’s something up but the fact of the matter can be he’s doing a lot of work to cover a lot of ground for a lot of people. So that can also be a factor within it.
“He’s not playing at the level that we all know that he can but that goes back to a team thing for me. I don’t think as team they’re playing as well as they can. Something needs to change because it’s not clicking at this moment in time. He’s a big player for them and I don’t see him getting left out.“