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Arsenal legend Keown reckons Liverpool's Van Dijk is the greatest defender in Premier League history

Martin Keown has described Virgil van Dijk as ‘perfection’ and believes the Liverpool centre-back is the greatest defender in Premier League history.

The Dutchman has proven a colossal figure during Liverpool’s transformation into one of Europe’s leading sides in recent seasons, Van Dijk thriving at the heart of the defence as Jurgen Klopp’s side secured Champions League success with victory over Tottenham in June.

The 28-year-old’s performances saw him named as the PFA Player’s Player of the Year last season, whilst he has continued in similar fashion this term by helping the Merseyside club lift the UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup in addition to an unbeaten start to the Premier League season.

Asked by Jim White on his opinion of the defender, Keown, who won three league titles during his time at Arsenal, was full of praise for Van Dijk’s impact since arriving at Anfield in January 2017 and gave an emphatic answer when asked if he was the greatest the division has seen.

“I think he has to be,” Keown told talkSPORT.

“It’s almost perfection to watch him play.

“He was up in Scotland and nobody really wanted him. He went to Southampton but anyone could have taken it. He seemed to be a player who was perhaps slow to mature, but now he’s there and he wants to win things, and he’s very much behind all of that [for Liverpool].

“Man City jumped out of that, they didn’t want to pay the big money to sign him but, what was it, £75million? That now looks fantastic value.

“It’s the right time and the right moment for him.

“I think with Joel Matip, Dejan Lovren and Joe Gomez, Liverpool have got the best four central defenders [in the Premier League].

“And if you’re the person playing alongside Van Dijk, he just gives you so much reassurance.”

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