‘Nothing’ - brutal criticism of Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk and his ‘you can’t’ response

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Ruud Gullit and Marco Van Basten did not hold back with their opinions of the Dutch centre-back after his performances during the international break.

Dutch football legends Ruud Gullit and Marco Van Basten have slammed Virgil van Dijk for his performances as captain during the international break. Despite enjoying a comfortable 3-0 win over Gibraltar in their second Euro 2024 qualifier, they were easily beaten by the World Cup runners-up France in Paris last week, losing in a heavy 4-0 defeat.

Van Dijk captained the side on both occasions and he came under fire from the two former European Champions, who both claimed they were ‘positively criticizing’ the Liverpool defender.

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“We [Gullit & Van Basten] are positively criticizing Virgil van Dijk. He is part of the Team of the Year right? He got his nice award right? Then show yourself to us! If he’s still worth it? Everyone believes so, but I don’t.” Claimed Gullit on ZiggoSport. “Virgil van Dijk should lead the play on the ball. But no, he passes it sideways to Geertruida.. ‘you do it’. He doesn’t take any responsibility on the ball. He plays so secure, so safe!”

Van Basten then went on to question his authority as captain: “Virgil van Dijk, our captain, makes a lot of noise on the pitch, but he says nothing.

“A true captain thinks out loud and makes the situation on the pitch clear to everyone. But Virgil van Dijk is always stuck in between. He creates chaos which creates misunderstandings on the pitch. You should avoid this as a captain.

The 31-year-old has 56 caps for his country since making his debut in 2015 and was quick to respond after the win over Gibraltar, quickly dismissing the comments.

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“These days, everyone is allowed to have an opinion. That’s how it is. It’s pretty normal that you can’t always be consistent. That you go through phases as a club and player looking for better form. This is human. Every week I try to play the best game of my life. But unfortunately this doesn’t always work out. People should remember that we are not robots, maybe people forget this sometimes.”

Van Dijk will return for Liverpool’s next game against Manchester City on Saturday April 1.

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