Liverpool skipper Virgil van Dijk has confessed that he was not in his best moment last season.
It was a poor season for the Reds as a whole, with Jurgen Klopp’s side finishing outside of the Champions League spots.
Liverpool’s poor season coincided with a drop-off in form from van Dijk, although he cannot be solely to blame for some of the results of last season – including an embarrassing 5-2 aggregate defeat to Real Madrid in Europe.
Nonetheless, the Dutch international is just about back to his best this season.
In an interview with a French outlet, van Dijk spoke about his recovery from the ACL sustained in the 2020/21 season, saying:
“Doubts only occurred in the aftermath of the operations.
“I had a lot of time to think and reflect. I did not sleep well. I was tired and in pain.
“I never gave up and I knew I was getting there. Today, I returned to where I wanted to be. I’m the same player as before.”
What did Liverpool skipper Virgil van Dijk say about last season?
Now speaking to Sky Sports after the Bournemouth victory, van Dijk admitted that it was a difficult 2022/23 season for him, but he feels now like that period is past:
“Last year was, for my standards, not the best year,” the 32-year-old began.
“I fully admit that. But it wasn’t that bad as everyone was making out how it was.”
“For me, it was a case of just keeping my head down and not listening to the noise around me and just playing.”
“I’m glad I did and pre-season on, even from last year, I think after we changed the system a little bit.”
“Trent played a little bit more inside and it went very well.”
“I feel fine and want to achieve a lot of things as captain of this football club.”
Virgil van Dijk is leading the way
A big part of how well Liverpool’s season has gone so far is due to the efforts of the skipper.
He has been immense in the heart of defence and is still yet to be dribbled past this season in Europe’s Top Five Leagues.
Virgil van Dijk. Back to his best. pic.twitter.com/gK8wqoGcbS
— DaveOCKOP (@DaveOCKOP) January 19, 2024
Furthermore, FBref confirm that the Liverpool skipper is the best ball-playing centre-back in the Premier League.
He ranks in the 94th percentile for passes attempted with a 91% pass completion rate.
Added to that is his 87th percentile ranking for shot creating actions as well as in the 77th percentile for progressive passes.
If van Dijk can maintain this form throughout the season, then Liverpool will surely end the campaign with a trophy or two.