Bayern Munich defender Mats Hummels believes Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk is the best centre-back in the world.

During an ‘AMA’ session with his Twitter followers, the Germany international was asked questions on a variety of topics including a potential transfer to Liverpool, his opinions on basketball and his favourite footballing moments.

Is Van Dijk the best centre-back in the world? Four key things to know…

  1. Van Dijk is the most expensive defender in footballing history, with Liverpool having paid a club-record £75m for him.
  2. The PL leaders have conceded the joint-fewest goals across Europe’s top five leagues this season.
  3. Van Dijk has won the most aerial duels (91), clearances (114) and interceptions (25) among his Liverpool teammates.
  4. Ex-Premier League midfielder Jamie Redknapp has described Van Dijk as John Terry, Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic.

The Bayern veteran was also quizzed on whether he thinks Van Dijk is currently the world’s best centre-back, which he affirmed with a “yes”.

Liverpool are scheduled to play Hummels’ Bayern side in the Bundesliga next month. Asked when he be making a transfer to Bayern’s Champions League Last 16 opponents, Hummels responded wryly with the date of that encounter.

Hummels had a successful 2018 with the Bavarians, winning his second consecutive Bundesliga title with the club since joining from Borussia Dortmund in 2016.

But the former Borussia Dortmund defender, who played under Liverpool boss Klopp for X years, had a less memorable time on international duty at the World Cup as Joachim Löw’s side were knocked out of the tournament in the group stages for the first time since 1978. Despite this misfortune, Hummels cited one memory in Russia as his favourite footballing moment of the year.

“Unfortunately 2018 was not that full with great moments but Toni Kroos’ free-kick against Sweden might stand out,” he added.

The 30-year-old also commented on matters outside of his purview, including his love for the award-winning film Bohemian Rhapsody, his thoughts on 90s sitcom Friends – if you are curious, Chandler and Rachel are his favourite characters on the show – and his interest in the NBA and the Dallas Mavericks.

‘Van Dijk has a long way to go to match ex-Liverpool world-beater Alan Hansen’

Football commentators from around the world have been impressed by the immense contribution Van Dijk has made to the Reds’ cause this season. A consensus is beginning to emerge among them that the Dutchman is one of, if not the best, defenders in world football.

But the Dutch defender has more work to do if he hopes to impress the Reds’ old guard, who won multiple league titles and three European Cups together.

According to Liverpool legend Ian Rush the centre-back has nothing on his former – Alan Hansen. When asked how Van Dijk compares the Reds hero, Rush told  Talksport in December: “Well, he’s still got a long way to go, for me.

“If Alan Hansen would be playing football today, he’d be an absolute world-beater.

“Even in our day, he never tackled anyone, but on the ball he was absolutely unbelievable. He was like a midfielder.

“I think Van Dijk and Joe Gomez could be absolutely incredible.

“But whoever plays with Van Dijk plays well – [Dejan] Lovren, [Joel] Matip – Van Dijk organises the defence and helps them all round. That’s how good he has been.”

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