Virgil van Dijk has been named as the world’s best centre-back in FourFourTwo‘s 100 Best Players in the World 2018 list.
The Dutchman’s £75m transfer from Southampton raised eyebrows last January, but he has helped tighten up a previously-leaky Reds backline to the point that Liverpool currently top the Premier League having shipped just seven goals all season.
Van Dijk helped the Reds reach the Champions League final in May, and in October was even on hand to score the last-gasp goal which took Holland into the Nations League finals at France’s expense. When Liverpool players voted among themselves to pick a captain ahead of their clash with Red Star Belgrade in October, it was the 27-year-old who came out on top.
Elsewhere in the list, Mohamed Salah is the highest-ranked Liverpool player at No.6 following a record-breaking 32-goal season in the Premier League and influential campaign in Europe.
Roberto Firmino (28th) and Sadio Mané (31st) are closely in tow after their scintillating year as part of world football’s most productive front three, while new signing Alisson takes his place at No.42 after helping Roma to the Champions League semi-finals and beginning life at Anfield strongly.
Andrew Robertson is the final Red to make the cut (67th) after a phenomenal breakthrough year at elite level. This time last year the Scot had only started six league games for Klopp after a slow start to his spell on Merseyside, but emerged as one of the surprise heroes of the campaign after dazzling on all fronts.