Klopp insists Liverpool FC star deserves Ballon d’Or ahead of Messi

Liverpool FC manager Jurgen Klopp says Virgil van Dijk deserves to win the Ballon d'Or ahead of Lionel Messi

Virgil van Dijk
Virgil van Dijk (Photo: EA Sports)

Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool FC defender Virgil van Dijk deserves to win the Ballon d’Or ahead of Lionel Messi.

The Netherlands international is on the 30-man shortlist to win the award along with his Reds team-mates Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Alisson Becker, Georginio Wijnaldum and Roberto Firmino.

Van Dijk played a key part in Liverpool FC’s Champions League success after the Merseyside outfit were 2-0 winners against Tottenham Hotspur in Madrid back in June.

The 28-year-old helped the Reds to keep the best defensive record in the Premier League as Liverpool FC finished with a club-record points tally of 97.

However, Klopp’s side missed out on a first Premier League crown by a point as the Reds paid the price for a 2-1 loss to Manchester City at The Etihad back in January.

Michael Owen is the last Liverpool FC player to win the Ballon d’Or after his sensational performances in 2001.

Messi has won the Ballon d’Or award on five previous occasions throughout his FC Barcelona career.

Liverpool FC boss Klopp believes Van Dijk deserves to win the award ahead of Messi.

“If you give the Ballon d’Or to the best player of this generation then you should give it always to Lionel Messi. That’s how it is,” Klopp told Sky Sports.

“But if you give it to the best player of last season, then it was Virgil van Dijk.

“I don’t know exactly how it will work but that is how I see it.

“The best player of all? That’s Lionel. Best player of last season? That’s Virgil. We will see.”

Liverpool FC signed Van Dijk in an £75m deal from Southampton back in 2018.

The Reds defender has managed to help transform Klopp’s back four into one of the best in the Premier League.

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