He’s stronger than everyone – Michael Owen names greatest centre-back of all time
Former Liverpool striker Michael Owen has said that Virgil van Dijk, despite only having one Premier League title to his record, is already the best centre-back of all time.
Since joining Liverpool for £75 million from Southampton in January 2018, Van Dijk has received a lot of praise.
After missing the majority of the 2020–21 season due to an ACL injury, the Dutchman has rapidly returned to his dominant best this season.
Before Liverpool's 3-2 Champions League semi-final second-leg victory against Villarreal on Tuesday night, BT Sport's pundits discussed Van Dijk, with Manchester United star Rio Ferdinand declaring the Netherlands international the "best centre-back on the planet right now, simple."
However, Owen then weighed in, saying: “Well, I would go further. I think he is the best centre-half of all time. ”
Asked what makes Van Dijk better than Ferdinand and others, Owen continued: “He probably scored a few more goals, not much, but we are talking about the greatest here.
As I have said, Rio was the best centre-half I ever played with. But with Van Dijk, as a centre-forward, I look at him and think: what do you do against him?
He is bigger than everyone, he is faster than everyone, he is stronger than everyone, he is brilliant on the ball, he scores goals. I have never seen anything like it.
At the moment, the only thing that goes against Van Dijk at the moment – and I stress, at the moment – is his winners’ medals. He has only won one Premier League and one Champions League.
People like Rio and [Paolo] Maldini and [Franco] Baresi, and people like that, who you might consider the greatest, have all got numerous. So that’s the only thing that goes against him.
“But as a one-off, I look at him and think: how can you get any better than that?”
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