Amid the consistent quality performances, Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp says “nobody thinks about” the price Liverpool paid for Virgil van Dijk anymore, according to ESPN FC’s Glenn Price.
Van Dijk was named Man of the Match for his performance in Liverpool’s 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace at Sellhurst Park on Monday night.
Van Dijk’s arrival came under scrutiny, as he came with a price tag, a world-record fee for a defender, of £75 million from Southhampton, but Klopp believes the cost was worth it.
“It was really, really good,” Klopp said of Van Dijk’s performance against Palace. “It’s obvious.
“Quality costs a specific price. With cars, it’s the case, and with players too. Nobody thinks about it now.
“He’s a player in this market who is worth it, and maybe now people think he was too cheap!
“He loves playing with these boys, and that’s the most important thing.”
Klopp discussed Liverpool’s big win over Palace.
“I thought we could have done better, but yes we expected Palace to be that strong,” Klopp said. “They are clear in their approach, playing a big number of long balls. Even in the warmup I saw [Wayne] Hennessey and thought: ‘Wow, that’s really difficult!’
“I don’t know a lot of defenders in the world that can defend Christian Benteke 100 percent of the time, clearly without a foul. It was very important that Virgil was there with that kind of presence.
“But still, the ball drops and then there’s a second ball, which was their plan. They are difficult, but defensively it was absolutely OK.
“Offensively I was not too happy with our play, the rhythm and the timing was not good. Both full-backs needed to be involved much more, open up their game a little bit to give different options. They shouldn’t be our No. 10s but they should be options.
“Still, around the goal we had, I think, three or four situations, good passes around the box, bit unlucky and then the penalty situation. I didn’t see it back so I can’t say, but in the game, it looked like a penalty.
“Millie scored in the best minute of the first half, and we did the exact same in the second half, only we controlled the game, the intensity of the full 90 minutes.
“But it was not a brilliant football game from us. We won it because we scored in two very decisive moments. That’s good — a big step for us.
“Everyone who watches us knows if we are not brilliant we usually lose. Today we were not brilliant but we still won. That was nice.”