Van Dijk brought an assured presence to the center of Liverpool's defense, a vocal figure at the back organizing the team as it was set out.
After a trophy-less first season for Guardiola in English football-a first of his managerial career-many said the great coach had finally met his match: Guardiola's style would not work in the Premier League, they said.
"He showed a lot of the things we want him to show in the future".
ESPN FC interviewed former Groningen technical director Henk Veldmate, now head of scouting at Ajax, about how he came to sign Van Dijk nearly eight years ago.
Coutinho, meanwhile, has completed his big-money transfer from Liverpool FC to Barcelona as the Reds reluctantly opted to let the Brazilian leave Anfield.
"Other than the crazy prices, the price of Coutinho is in line with the prices of today", Pirlo told Sky Sport Italia. The giant defender is currently priced a £5.4.
At the start of the 2010-11 season, a teenage Van Dijk made the 150-mile move to Groningen from Willem II's youth ranks.
Oblak has developed into one of the more dependable goalkeepers in La Liga and while he would represent a significant improvement over Mignolet and Karius, his release clause of £100 million makes that move less likely.
ESPN's Mark Ogden believes Virgil van Dijk can have the same impact on Liverpool that Rio Ferdinand had for Manchester United.
"Personally, for me, it's someone else I can learn from", said the 20-year-old. Liverpool, fourth and a massive 18 points short of Guardiola's team, are preparing to host City on Saturday (January 13), and they will be seeking revenge. Against City, though, it is the defense that will need to be resolute.
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