Virgil van Dijk.

Martin Keown reveals who would be Virgil van Dijk's perfect defensive partner at Liverpool

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Football News

Liverpool fans were given the perfect late Christmas present when Virgil van Dijk’s move to Anfield was agreed on December 27.

The 26-year-old will become the world’s most expensive defender when he completes his move from Southampton in January, for a fee reported to be £75 million.

Despite the huge price tag, fans will argue that it will be money well spent, with Liverpool's downfall so far this season being their defensive woes. 

Jurgen Klopp's team came under heavy criticism following a 3-3 draw with Arsenal last week after going 2-0 up, then 3-2 down.

They're also the top five team that have conceded the most goals, shipping 23 times. Compare that to leaders Manchester City's 12, it suggests that an improvement can be made. 

And Van Dijk should be a big part of that improvement, but only if he has a strong defensive partner by his side. 

Klopp has rotated his central defenders far too often this term, often using Joel Matip, Ragnar Klavan and Dejan Lovren in the role, chopping and changing most games.

Van Dijk will expect to play every game when he arrives on Merseyside in a few days time, and according to Martin Keown, Klopp should concentrate on finding the Dutchman a good partner.

Southampton v Newcastle United - Premier League

And it wouldn't even cost them any more money because the ex-Arsenal and Everton defender believes Liverpool already have the perfect man.

Writing for the Daily Mail, Keown said:    

"What Klopp should do now is use this as an opportunity to form a new partnership in the heart of Liverpool's back-line by moving Joe Gomez into the middle to play alongside his record signing." 

Arsenal v Liverpool - Premier League

"While Dejan Lovren and Joel Matip are too cumbersome and lack mobility, Van Dijk and Gomez are both quick players who would complement each other well.

"Gomez has earned his stripes playing out wide but at times, such as in last week's 3-3 draw at Arsenal, he has looked like a centre-half playing at right back.

"It is time for Gomez to be given his chance at centre-back."


The Englishman made his Liverpool debut in 2015 and earned his first England cap earlier this year.

He's already showing signs that he could become a top Premier League defender, but as Keown says, needs the chance to prove himself. 

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