Nine stats to explain why Liverpool’s Van Dijk was in the FIFPro World Xl

Virgil Van Dijk has established himself as one of the best defenders in the world since arriving at Liverpool in 2018 – and that accolade is now official. 

The 28-year-old recently won the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award and has now been named in the 2019 FIFPro Team of the Year after helping the Reds win their sixth European Cup last season.

Following his latest achievement, we’ve taken a look at nine ridiculous stats from Van Dijk’s first full season at Anfield.

– The defender had the most touches, passes, clearances and interceptions for Liverpool in the Premier League last season.

– Van Dijk was not successfully dribbled past in either the Premier League or Champions League in 2018/19.

– The Dutchman had a 74% tackle success rate in the Premier League during 2018/19.

– Van Dijk won 181 of his 244 aerial duels (75%) in the Premier League last season. Only Harry Maguire (78%) won more.

– He won 303 duels in his 50 games for Liverpool in all competitions last season which is just above six successful duels per game.

– After Liverpool’s game against Bayern Munich, Van Dijk became the first Liverpool player to score and assist a goal in an away Champions League knockout game for 12 years.

– With Van Dijk in defence, Liverpool conceded just 22 times in the Premier League last season and kept 21 clean sheets.

– The centre-back missed just one Champions League game and only 35 minutes of Premier League action last season.

– Van Dijk helped Liverpool keep five consecutive home clean sheets in the Champions League for the first time in the UCL era.

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