This summer, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp may face an unexpected problem
Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool is “overrated,” according to ex-Chelsea defender Jason Cundy, and is unfit to fill the shoes of John Terry or Rio Ferdinand. Jurgen Klopp now faces a new question about whether the Dutchman is in his long-term plans.
Van Dijk has gotten more criticism this season than in any of his prior Liverpool campaigns. The Reds are having a bad season overall and are unlikely to win any big awards.
Van Dijk has been available to Klopp for the majority of the season. He hasn’t always had a dependable teammate, with Joel Matip, Ibrahima Konate, and Joe Gomez all dealing with their own issues.
Van Dijk has frequently been a player on whom Klopp could rely, but that has not been the case this season. He turns 32 in the summer, and Klopp may be forced to ponder the unthinkable: finding a replacement.
Liverpool’s most recent setback was a 1-0 loss against Bournemouth on Saturday. Van Dijk has drawn criticism for his role in Philip Billing’s goal.
Cundy believes it was a common error that went overlooked early in Van Dijk’s career. According to the pundit on talkSPORT: “Personally, I believe he is overrated. I believe there is a lot of media love for what Van Dijk has done.
“There’s no doubt he’s a fantastic centre-half, but he makes far too many errors, which I believe go overlooked. There was a goal they conceded when they were eliminated from the Champions League a couple of seasons ago, and he has this lazy running style.
“He appears to be biding his time, but he does not respond. He was dragging [Dominic] Solanke down. Even though he’s on the other side, that’s bad center-half play. I believe he’s had a fantastic 18 months, despite the fact that the injury has had an impact.
“But, Billing’s goal was not about the injury. I’m not sure what it is, but once [Solanke] gets away from him on the right side, he [Van Dijk] appears to come to a halt and misunderstand the position.”
Van Dijk is widely regarded as one of the top Premier League defenders of all time. Cundy, on the other hand, believes the 31-year-old is nowhere near the level of a couple of the league’s greats.
“People compare him to John Terry and Rio Ferdinand, but he’s not in the same category – he can’t lace their boots,” he continued.