Virgil van Dijk “very proud” but “still improving” after horror injury

Liverpool FC, Virgil Van Dijk (Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)
Liverpool FC, Virgil Van Dijk (Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images) /

Virgil van Dijk has reflected on his return from the horror injury which saw him sidelined for almost an entire season after arguably the strongest year of his entire career.

While Virgil van Dijk’s impact in the current Liverpool team is immeasurable, you can visibly see the difference in the Reds when the Dutch powerhouse is absent from the line-up.

Since posing in with his now iconic number 4 shirt in front of a Christmas tree gave every Liverpool fan the greatest present possible in December 2017, VVD – along with Alisson – shored up a shaky backline and added balance to a team which could burst the net at will, but leaked goals all-too-often at the other end.

After winning the Champions League in his first full season with the club and partnering a Premier League trophy with the UEFA Player of the Year award in his second, though, a horror tackle from Everton’s Jordan Pickford saw Virgil van Dijk sidelined for nine months with an ACL injury.

Speaking with Amazon Prime Video Sport, Van Dijk reflected on his progress and said he’s “very proud” of his progress since his career ground to a halt in October 2020.

"“I am very proud. I can be proud of where I am today. Like you said, it’s been a year and two months, three months at the moment and the amount of games I’ve played so far, and obviously things can improve – like it should be – but I’m very proud of myself in this case and the people around me that helped me to where I am today.”"

In what will be music to the ears of Reds fans around the globe, Virgil van Dijk – who seems to have picked up exactly where he left off since his return – added that he feels he has further improvement in him as his knee rehabilitation continues.

"“I’m still improving, the knee is still improving. That’s absolutely normal. Everyone who knows about knee injuries knows it will take time. Everyone who sees other players with knee injuries, it takes time, so I’m just proud of myself and I keep working, keep improving, keep enjoying of course and play the games as good as I can.”"

Van Dijk, whose bullet header opened the scoring against Crystal Palace at a time when two of the club’s most prolific assets are unavailable due to international commitments, added that he’s happy with his performances and that he hopes that success transcends his performances to lead to more glory days returning to Anfield.

"“I’m happy with the performances so far and hopefully they can lead to success as well with the whole team.”"

One thing is for sure if Virgil can continue his trend of finding the back of the net, all signs point to the team overall finding success. In the 13 matches in which Van Dijk has scored for Liverpool, the Reds have an incredible 100% win rate.