“I was quite a late bloomer”: £240,000/week Liverpool star admits he “was not a great player back in the days”

Virgil van Dijk told the Liverpool Echo that he was a late bloomer but is enjoying the heights he’s hitting with the Reds even more as a result.

The Dutchman moved to Anfield when he was 27, earning Southampton a £75million fee for his time on the South Coast.

Many fans on social media enjoy debating who is the greatest Premier League centre-back of all time and van Dijk has featured heavily in the conversation for his incredible contributions at Liverpool.

Virgil van Dijk

However, when compared to the likes of John Terry, Rio Ferdinand, Vincent Kompany and co, the Dutch international doesn’t yet have the longevity to match the unbelievable personal heights he has reached.

His individual honours include PFA Players‘ Player of the Season, UEFA Men’s Player of the Season and UEFA Defender of the Year.

Not to mention the fact that he finished 2nd in the Ballon D’Or voting in 2019 behind none other than Lionel Messi, with the Argentine winning the accolade by just 7 votes.

Messi accumulated 686 points while van Dijk got 769 in the voting process.

Virgil van Dijk

Last season, van Dijk, who earns £240,000/week, was cruelly struck down by an ACL tear in October and missed the remainder of the season but he’s close to reaching the heights he did before his injury and is keen for fans to enjoy the rest of the season.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, van Dijk said: “I was not a great player back in the days. I was quite a late bloomer, that’s why I enjoy my career even more. Every day I take it as it is. Enjoy it.

“For me, coming back from the injury as well, having seen everything from the sideline last year, to be in all competitions still is something I won’t take for granted.

“The game on Tuesday (against Manchester United) is going to be intense against our rivals, we need the fans as well to be here with us, just enjoy it and we will give it everything. That’s what we can promise until the end of the season and whatever happens we will see.”

Michael Mongie
Football Central Media Group founder, owner and editor.

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