Virgil van Dijk is the most expensive defender in the world by moving to Liverpool. But the high detachment and his behavior upset the football fans in England.
With a simple photo, Liverpool FC announced a historic transfer: Virgil van Dijk holds the jersey of Liverpool FC, his new employer, in the camera. As sober as the picture is, so great is the dimension of this change. The club of German coach Jürgen Klopp transferred for the central defender converted more than 84 million euros to Southampton FC. A defender has never been more expensive. It's the end of a month-long transfer posse. Van Dijk already flirted openly last summer with a move to one of England's top clubs, although he had only extended his contract in 2016. Duration: until 2022.
Manchester City was also interested
But that was not all: He submitted to his club an official transfer request, which then - probably from the environment of the player - appeared in several British media. His club refused, van Dijk landed at the start of the season in the stands. "He is not there, because he is not 100 percent from the head," explained coach Mauricio Pellegrino. After all, the Dutchman has completed 12 missions at last, but could not (or did not) continue his outstanding performance in the preseason.
In the preseason van Dijk helped the ambitious middle class club Southampton for Europa League qualification, while he sat down in the notepads of the English top clubs. Pep Guardiola and Manchester City were interested in his services, but the contract was now Klopp.
"On the day that football is over, I will not do my job anymore", Klopp had said in the summer of 2016 about the move from Paul Pogba to Manchester United for 105 million euros. He wanted to find another way to succeed, even if he could invest so much money. "If I spend money, it's just to build a real team," said Klopp.
Van Dijk's qualities are not doubted on the island, but experts still consider the transfer overly overpriced. "He's not worth the money," England's former gale idol Alan Shearer casually said, "Southampton could have called any price, knowing that Liverpool was desperately looking for a center-back." Former England international Gary Neville could not help but laugh: "Wow, that's an incredible amount of money."