“Trent Alexander-Arnold is the complete package” – Virgil Van Dijk


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The England international scored Liverpool’s equaliser in Saturday’s draw at Manchester City.

Virgil Van Dijk has weighed into the debate over Trent Alexander-Arnold’s best position by proclaiming his Liverpool team-mate as the complete package.

Alexander-Arnold delivered another reminder of his attacking talents as he got forward to strike a fine equaliser for the Reds in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at champions Manchester City.

The 25-year-old right-back had spent a lot of a tight Premier League encounter in defensive mode, trying to contain City’s tricky Belgium winger Jeremy Doku.

It was a sweet moment for Alexander-Arnold after plenty of debate over the past fortnight over whether or how he can fit into the England team.

Van Dijk, the Liverpool captain, said: “I think everyone this season, as a defender, one v one against Doku will have a tough afternoon. He’s a very good dribbler.

“But I don’t think he had a tough afternoon on the whole. It’s how you defend them together and try to get two v one in situations and, in the end, I’m pleased for him that he got the equaliser.

“He offers a lot defensively and, obviously in possession, he has qualities that are very special and he shows that as well, so he has the complete package.

“He has to keep doing what he’s doing, keep improving, keep that high standard he has for himself and we all have for him as well.”

Alexander-Arnold has expanded his game over the past year, not only playing as a conventional attacking full-back but also in a hybrid defence-central midfield role.

His recent England outings against Malta and North Macedonia were also in midfield and Van Dijk admits he does not know where he will ultimately end up.

“I don’t know, that’s for the coaches that work with him,” said the centre-back. “I think for the moment he’s playing just fine where he is right now.

“He has that freedom to mix it up and he has to do that because you see teams are working it out at times, so he has to be able to switch from staying on the outside and going on the inside as well.

“I think it’s a good learning curve for him as well and (on Saturday) he did that well because obviously he was playing against one of the most in-form wingers at the moment.”

Saturday’s result kept Liverpool within a point of title favourites City and, after the frustration of failing to challenge last season, Van Dijk hopes the 2020 champions can push them much closer this time.

The Dutchman said: “It’s no secret we want to challenge for everything we are competing in and this year we are looking consistent, something we were missing last year.

“But we are in November with a difficult period coming up, difficult games ahead of us. Anything can happen but hopefully, if we don’t get many injuries or no injuries, we have to confident and give it everything.”


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