Martin Keown: What makes Liverpool FC star so special

Arsenal legend Martin Keown lavishes praise on Liverpool FC centre-half Virgil van Dijk

Virgil van Dijk (Photo: LFC TV / YouTube)
Virgil van Dijk (Photo: LFC TV / YouTube)

Martin Keown believes Virgil van Dijk’s ability to win games for his team sets the Liverpool FC defender apart from his peers.

The Netherlands international was instrumental in Liverpool FC’s 3-1 win against Bayern Munich in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie last week.

Van Dijk provided the assist for Sadio Mane’s opening goal before the club-record signing found the net in the second half to restore their lead after Joel Matip’s own goal.

Liverpool FC have the best defensive record in the Premier League this season thanks in part to Van Dijk’s performances at the back.

The 27-year-old has established himself as the leader in Jurgen Klopp’s back four to help get the best out of Alisson Becker, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson.

And now, former Arsenal defender Keown has explained why Van Dijk is such a unique player ahead of Liverpool FC’s clash against Fulham on Sunday.

“It has been 14 years since Chelsea’s John Terry became the last defender to be crowned PFA Player of the Year,” Keown told the Daily Mail.

“Van Dijk’s brilliant all-round performance in Germany only underlined why, this season, he can be the next defender to receive this prestigious award from his peers. On Wednesday night, he was perfection personified.

“What sets him apart is that he never thinks, ‘I’m just here to defend.’ Even on an intense, high-stakes night such as this he is always searching for ways he can win the game for his team.

“He sets an example for every young centre-back in the way he is always on the lookout for that killer pass.”

The Reds will take on FC Porto for a place in the Champions League semi-finals after the Merseyside outfit were 5-0 aggregate winners against the Portuguese club in the round of 16 last term.

Liverpool FC will be without Robertson after the Scotland international earned a suspension during their 3-1 win at the Allianz Arena.

Klopp’s side can hoist themselves above Manchester City with a win at Fulham on Sunday.

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