Van Dijk: Liverpool is going through a transitional phase

Liverpool and Netherlands captain Virgil van Dijk said his England side were in a transition period but stressed they had much to offer the club and country after the setbacks of recent seasons.

After being loved and protected by fans, the 32-year-old defender came under criticism for his performance last season but told reporters he had made a promising start to the season despite being sent off against Newcastle United last month.

He added to Dutch media before facing Greece in the Euro 2020 qualifier in Eindhoven on Thursday: “We are in a transition phase in Liverpool. Of course it's great that coach Jürgen Klopp still sees me as part of the new team. We spoke to each other in the first few weeks of preparation and he showed his trust in me.”

Liverpool finished disappointing last season in fifth place in the Premier League and missed out on the Champions League for the first time since the 2015-2016 season.

Van Dijk, who became Liverpool captain following Jordan Henderson's Saudi deal transfer last July, stressed that his role in the team is different to that of the national team.

He continued: “I’m proud. It's a big responsibility, but in the Dutch team we meet for a few days, so the number of management tasks is not very large. There are more connections with the club on and off the field, they share almost everything.

Liverpool are third in the English Premier League with ten points from four games, two points behind leaders Manchester City. 

Advice for Liverpool: They must think about the post-Mohamed Salah stage 

There have been calls for Liverpool to think about the era after their star Mohamed Salah, while Neil Jones, editor of website Cut Offside, urged the Red Club to prepare an alternative to replace the Egyptian striker in the short or medium term.

Mohamed Salah has been linked with a move to Ittihad Jeddah during the summer transfer window, while his manager Jurgen Klopp has repeatedly denied the news and stressed that the Egyptian striker is an integral part of Liverpool's squad after he graduates next season It wants to return to the Champions League. Last season he finished fifth and stayed away from the prestigious continental championship.

Jones wrote: Players Liverpool have admired so far will not be able to replace Salah. It is impossible for Bukayo Saka to leave Arsenal, while Tottenham star Heung-Min Son's age makes his move to the Reds difficult.

He continued: There are names like Leroy Sané and Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich) and Federico Chiesa (Juventus) but their level fluctuates as they go through ups and downs, but on a personal level I advise Liverpool to sign someone else. player, but he must be quick and able to score and create goals. He doesn't take over the goal task like Salah.

He concluded: Kvaratskhelia (Napoli) and Rafael Leao (Milan) are interesting, and Klopp must also take into account that Salah's successor is suitable to play with the other players in the attacking line, such as Darwin Núñez.

Salah has been playing for Liverpool since the summer of 2017 and is the red team's fifth best goalscorer in their history with 188 goals, ahead of legend Steven Gerrard.
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