Rio Ferdinand believes that Sergio Ramos is a better defender than Virgil van Dijk

Arsenal v Manchester City - The Emirates FA Cup Semi-Final

Virgil van Dijk has been proclaimed by many to be the world's best defender this season.

The Dutchman has been something of a revelation since his move to Liverpool and if the Reds manage to win the Premier League in May, they will be greatly indebted to their record signing.

It's become widely accepted that Van Dijk is the number one defender in England right now, but not everybody is subscribing to claims that he rules over his continental rivals.

There can be little doubting that Van Dijk's argument has been bolstered by the struggles of Real Madrid this season, sparking a decline in form for Raphael Varane and Sergio Ramos.

However, the one component missing from the Liverpool man's CV is trophies and he simply doesn't have the silverware to match his impressive form recently.

Is Van Dijk the best in the world?

And there lies the crux of the argument as far as Rio Ferdinand is concerned.

One of the best central defenders of the 21st Century, Ferdinand was asked whether he considered Van Dijk to be the world's finest centre-back.

According to the Mirror, the Manchester United legend was keen to rebuff the idea and in spite of Real going off the boil this season, he still cites Ramos as the man to beat.

Manchester City v Liverpool FC - Premier League

Ferdinand picks Ramos over Van Dijk

When asked about Van Dijk, Ferdinand answered: “I’d still put Sergio Ramos there.

“Ramos, when the big games come up, the trophies are there to be won, he’s normally standing there with his sleeves rolled up. He is not being shifted at the moment.

“To be considered the best in the world, you have got to win stuff as well.

“You cannot just play well for your team and sit there as runner-up or coming third or fourth.

“That’s why, when people talk about Player of the Year and you see they haven’t won anything but they are the best player, I am thinking: ‘How? You haven’t influenced a team to win things.’

“You need to be part of a team that is winning to be considered like that.

“Virgil is a fantastic player, potentially the best in the world but, right now, no.

“And I’d think he would agree. Winning is an essential part of winning personal accolades. You have to win.

“If Liverpool win the league it’s legit, but it would feel odd if he is the best player and they have come second or third.”

Real Madrid v Liverpool - UEFA Champions League Final

Pretty difficult to argue with you there, Rio.

It seems the BT Sport pundit is open to changing his opinion on Van Dijk if he's successful this season, but Ramos remains the top dog in the mean time.

At the end of the day, no matter how many great performances you deliver, it's all in vein if your team doesn't deliver the silverware that supporters are always demanding.

Do you think Van Dijk is the best defender in the world? Have your say in the comments section below.

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