Virgil van Dijk | Performances

Rossa

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Yeah agreed. He’s transformed us over the last 18 months but that doesn’t mean he’s perfect. A red card every day of the week.
Ah, you were the sensible one. Sorry, I mixed you guys up. Great defender, but all players make mistakes, even prime Rio, Nesta, Maldini etc made mistakes. Have a couple more seasons like this and we will be talking about him as one of the great PL defenders.
 

mwake

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He definitely goes for the ball and not the man, but yes VVD could have been sent off for that as a technicality. You see other players that don't even go for the ball with the intention of hurting players, but with that tackle VVD clearly won the ball cleanly but the force of the slide took him through and he went through to the player's ankle. I don't see the malice in that tackle it's a good intentioned ball-winning tackle that went horribly wrong. Yellow at least.
 
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Gio

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Yeah could have been red. That was a nasty tackle and clearly at least a yellow card.


How can anyone argue this was a clean tackle is beyond me, no touching the ball doesn't mean it's a clean tackle.
The lucky Liverpool angle has naturally been overegged on here but Van Dijk avoiding the clear red there (and Mertens avoiding serious injury) was a stroke of fortune.
 

RedRonaldo

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I've read in 2018-19 season, not once did a player dribble past VVD, not even Messi. Is that really true? If so then its remarkable record. I mean, what more can you expect a defender to achieve? He is literally unbeaten by any players. I think he deserves Ballon D'or this year.
 

DutchDemon8

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I've read in 2018-19 season, not once did a player dribble past VVD, not even Messi. Is that really true? If so then its remarkable record. I mean, what more can you expect a defender to achieve? He is literally unbeaten by any players. I think he deserves Ballon D'or this year.
The “not being dribbled past” stat is quite deceiving. It actually meand that every tackle VvD attempted, succeeded. That of course is still very impressive, but there have been players who have run past him. This still doesn’t happen often and that’s why he is quite clearly the best defender in the world and a ballon d’or contender. Maybe even favourite if the Netherlands win tonight.
 

Buchan

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I've read in 2018-19 season, not once did a player dribble past VVD, not even Messi. Is that really true? If so then its remarkable record. I mean, what more can you expect a defender to achieve? He is literally unbeaten by any players. I think he deserves Ballon D'or this year.
Bullshit statistic. Watch how van Dijk ‘defends’ against attackers dribbling towards him - he retreats, retreats, retreats until the attacker is forced to pass or shoot. Van Dijk never/rarely commits himself to a tackle, hence the bogus stat.
 

giorno

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Bullshit statistic. Watch how van Dijk ‘defends’ against attackers dribbling towards him - he retreats, retreats, retreats until the attacker is forced to pass or shoot. Van Dijk never/rarely commits himself to a tackle, hence the bogus stat.
Yeah, and he does that in a very smart way, cutting off the angles and basically forcing the attacker into a bad choice. He's been incredible in 1vs1 situations all year long. Committing to the tackle is for guys who aren't confident of their ability to force a striker into a bad position
 

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Yeah, and he does that in a very smart way, cutting off the angles and basically forcing the attacker into a bad choice. He's been incredible in 1vs1 situations all year long. Committing to the tackle is for guys who aren't confident of their ability to force a striker into a bad position
Something both him and De Ligt are very good at. De Ligt did it nicely re Kane at some point on Thursday. Robben build a career on the back of defenders committing to a challenge.
 

Synco

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Something both him and De Ligt are very good at. De Ligt did it nicely re Kane at some point on Thursday. Robben build a career on the back of defenders committing to a challenge.
But imo to a good extent because he was great at forcing the defender to react, and then exploiting either the action or the passiveness. Presenting the other player with bad choices is a two way thing.
 

oggy boy

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Base on what Salah and Mane are on that list?! Why only winning CL gives players chance to win BDO?

VVD has had ONE great season in top level football, and everyone goes crazy about him.

Messi should win it. Also, hope that Ronaldo destroys Nederlands tonight.
 
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Bubz27

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Do you guys know Ronaldo has never scored versus Van Dijk? Amazing!!!!
 

giorno

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How does that "not dribbled past" stat compare to other CB's?
It does compare well, but it means VVD only goes for a tackle when he's sure of winning the ball and has great timing. VVD attempted far fewer tackles than nearly every other comparable CB though
 

King_Cantona07

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It does compare well, but it means VVD only goes for a tackle when he's sure of winning the ball and has great timing. VVD attempted far fewer tackles than nearly every other comparable CB though
Its a false stat. He was clearly defeated in dribble when exposed - like what we saw againts Netherlands where he dragged a player back who defeated him in dribble. At liverpool, he is protected by the double pivot and when these 2 defensive midfielders lose their game he will be exposed and will start to see his real defensive capabilities. He is right now playing in a team which helps his skills and masks his shortcomings.
 

Mcking

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How does that "not dribbled past" stat compare to other CB's?
Going by this season alone, Van Dijk in the EPL commited to 38 tackles in 3385 minutes, coming out with a perfect 38-0-3385 record. Laporte commited to 54 tackles and was dribbled past 12 times in 3055 minutes for a 54-12-3055.
Alderweireld 47-10-2924
Vertoghen 49-10-1915
Smalling 36-6-2128
Lindelof 50-10-2602
Jones 24-5-1264
Bailly 17-2-630
In the Serie A, Koulibaly commited to 78 tackles with a 78-17-3134 record.
Chiellini 27-3-1990
Bonucci 21-3-2471
Skriniar 85-21-3150
In Spain's Primera Division,
Ramos 58-17-2476
Varane 37-4-2757
Godin 74-22-2508
Pique 55-13-3150
De Ligt commited to 48 tackles for a 48-14-2970 record.
What Van Dijk does is ensure that he isn't fully exposed by commiting recklessly, and he instead looks to stay with his man, force a decision, intercept or block the ball. It's an impressive stat nevertheless and highlights his superb reading of the game and near-flawless defending.
 

Amar__

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Going by this season alone, Van Dijk in the EPL commited to 38 tackles in 3385 minutes, coming out with a perfect 38-0-3385 record. Laporte commited to 54 tackles and was dribbled past 12 times in 3055 minutes for a 54-12-3055.
Alderweireld 47-10-2924
Vertoghen 49-10-1915
Smalling 36-6-2128
Lindelof 50-10-2602
Jones 24-5-1264
Bailly 17-2-630
In the Serie A, Koulibaly commited to 78 tackles with a 78-17-3134 record.
Chiellini 27-3-1990
Bonucci 21-3-2471
Skriniar 85-21-3150
In Spain's Primera Division,
Ramos 58-17-2476
Varane 37-4-2757
Godin 74-22-2508
Pique 55-13-3150
De Ligt commited to 48 tackles for a 48-14-2970 record.
What Van Dijk does is ensure that he isn't fully exposed by commiting recklessly, and he instead looks to stay with his man, force a decision, intercept or block the ball. It's an impressive stat nevertheless and highlights his superb reading of the game and near-flawless defending.
Can you find numbera for Smalling's season under van Gaal?
 

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Its a false stat. He was clearly defeated in dribble when exposed - like what we saw againts Netherlands where he dragged a player back who defeated him in dribble. At liverpool, he is protected by the double pivot and when these 2 defensive midfielders lose their game he will be exposed and will start to see his real defensive capabilities. He is right now playing in a team which helps his skills and masks his shortcomings.
Agreed, Van Dyke is only good because he plays in a team. Put him on the pitch alone and he'll be shown for the fraud he really is.
 

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Feck me I’m glad they lost today, the VVD balon d’or snippets would drive me fecking nuts.
 

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Chris Smalling in the EPL:
18/19 36-6-2128
17/18 52-12-2536
16/17 16-4-1215
15/16 68-13-3150
14/15 42-6-1880
13/14 46-3-1938
Thanks, looks better in most years than majority of player named above. Three or four very impressive years.
 

adexkola

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Yeah, and he does that in a very smart way, cutting off the angles and basically forcing the attacker into a bad choice. He's been incredible in 1vs1 situations all year long. Committing to the tackle is for guys who aren't confident of their ability to force a striker into a bad position
This is bollocks by the way.
 

giorno

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This is bollocks by the way.
Except it's not. Best way to defend is to avoid 1vs1 entirely. Best way to defend 1vs1 is to turn them into 1vs many. Van Dijk is great at that
 

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Except it's not. Best way to defend is to avoid 1vs1 entirely. Best way to defend 1vs1 is to turn them into 1vs many. Van Dijk is great at that
Rio was similar. He used to go on ridiculous runs without committing a foul, 30+ games sometimes, because he didn't have to engage defenders physically to shut them down.
 

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Rio was similar. He used to go on ridiculous runs without committing a foul, 30+ games sometimes, because he didn't have to engage defenders physically to shut them down.
The hallmark of a great defender is how many times he does his job without having to go to ground. Ferdinand excelled at that, so does VVD. Dejan Lovren makes a lot of last ditch, sliding tackles, & that's why no one other than himself classes him as a world class centre-back.
 

11101

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Rio was similar. He used to go on ridiculous runs without committing a foul, 30+ games sometimes, because he didn't have to engage defenders physically to shut them down.
And yet still some in England think Terry was better. We're brought up being taught to 'be strong in the tackle' or 'make sure the striker knows you're there'. Very little appreciation of defenders like the Dutch back line last night who read the game and shepherd the attacker away from danger, despite all the greats over the last decades playing that way.
 

Pogue Mahone

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The hallmark of a great defender is how many times he does his job without having to go to ground. Ferdinand excelled at that, so does VVD. Dejan Lovren makes a lot of last ditch, sliding tackles, & that's why no one other than himself classes him as a world class centre-back.
There’s more than one way to defend. We saw great examples of the two styles in the same team at United, with Rio and Vidic. I’d be hard pressed to say who was the better defender out of the pair of them.

In the Dutch team, Van Dijk has a CB alongside him who absolutely loves a sliding tackle and De Ligt has every chance of ending up as just as good a defender. Even though he’s much more likely to go to ground.
 

11101

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There’s more than one way to defend. We saw great examples of the two styles in the same team at United, with Rio and Vidic. I’d be hard pressed to say who was the better defender out of the pair of them.

In the Dutch team, Van Dijk has a CB alongside him who absolutely loves a sliding tackle and De Ligt has every chance of ending up as just as good a defender. Even though he’s much more likely to go to ground.
Different styles and they complemented each other but Rio would have been world class in any team, Vidic reached the level he did partly because he was next to Rio. Rio was genuinely a generational talent. All the defenders at that level in the last few decades have been the type to tackle as a last resort.

Plus Vidic is beginning to get the Roy Keane treatment, there's a narrative starting to form that he went around trying to break people's legs and occasionally the ball got in the way. He was a brilliant footballer.
 

Pogue Mahone

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Different styles and they complemented each other but Rio would have been world class in any team, Vidic reached the level he did partly because he was next to Rio. Rio was genuinely a generational talent. All the defenders at that level in the last few decades have been the type to tackle as a last resort.

Plus Vidic is beginning to get the Roy Keane treatment, there's a narrative starting to form that he went around trying to break people's legs and occasionally the ball got in the way. He was a brilliant footballer.
When did I say Vidic tried to break anyone’s legs? He was a brilliant footballer and a world class defender but he did it in a very different way to Rio or Van Dijk.

I’m a massive fan of Rio and typically prefer his style of defending to the more blood and guts approach of Vidic and De Ligt but the idea that the Rio/Van Dijk approach is the better/only way to defend is nonsense. That’s why Rio and Vidic combined was a better option for us than two Rio’s would have been.
 
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11101

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When did I say Vidic tried to break anyone’s legs? He was a brilliant footballer and a world class defender but he did it in a very different way to Rio or Van Dijk.

I’m a massive fan of Rio and typically prefer his style of defending to the more blood and guts approach of Vidic and De Ligt but the idea that the Rio/Van Dijk approach is the better/only way to defend is nonsense. That’s why Rio and Vidic combined was a better option for us than two Rio’s would have been.
You didn't say that, I'm just saying in general you see some people starting to forget his actual ability as a footballer, same as you do with Keane.

There is more than one way to defend yes, but over the last 20 or so years the Rio style has been the slightly better one at the very top level.
 

redman5

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There’s more than one way to defend. We saw great examples of the two styles in the same team at United, with Rio and Vidic. I’d be hard pressed to say who was the better defender out of the pair of them.

In the Dutch team, Van Dijk has a CB alongside him who absolutely loves a sliding tackle and De Ligt has every chance of ending up as just as good a defender. Even though he’s much more likely to go to ground.
Yeah, I think that's a fair point. It got me to thinking back to the great side we had in the 80's when we had Alan Hansen & Mark Lawrenson as our main CB pairing. Hansen was in the Rio/VVD mould. Very calm & comfortable on the ball, & very rarely had the need to go to ground to win the ball. Lawrenson was a terrific tackler, who had a freaky habit of winning the ball via a slide tackle & not make contact with the player. Still not putting Lovren on a pedestal though.
 

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As good as VVD and De Ligt are, I would happily deport both of them to have a 20 year old Robben again.
 

DonnieDarko

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Apparently he's been the fastest player of CL 19/20, reaching 34.5km/h once against Barcelona away.
Quite funny
 

duffer

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Apparently he's been the fastest player of CL 19/20, reaching 34.5km/h once against Barcelona away.
Quite funny
Central defenders are often the fastest players in their teams. Rudiger was the fastest for Chelsea last season with 35.19 km/h recorded.
 

adexkola

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You didn't say that, I'm just saying in general you see some people starting to forget his actual ability as a footballer, same as you do with Keane.

There is more than one way to defend yes, but over the last 20 or so years the Rio style has been the slightly better one at the very top level.
That's not true. I get it if that is your preference, but at United for example, I'll match Vidic's 08-09 season vs Rio's 07-08 season. Like Pogue said, there's more than one way to be a brilliant defender. None of those ways involve being Ramos, of course.
 

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Central defenders are often the fastest players in their teams. Rudiger was the fastest for Chelsea last season with 35.19 km/h recorded.
Former United academy CB Roshaun Williams had the schoolboy record in the 100 metres and Steven Caulker was an 800m champ in his youth.
 

duffer

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Former United academy CB Roshaun Williams had the schoolboy record in the 100 metres and Steven Caulker was an 800m champ in his youth.
I remember reading that during the early Fergie years, Gary Pallister was your fastest player.