Liverpool target rated better than Virgil van Dijk as deal nears completion


Liverpool target Sven Botman is described as a machine and rated better than Van Dijk by his experienced teammate who has played with both stars

Liverpool are in talks with the agent of Sven Botman with a January bid seemingly next in line for the Lille defender.

Duncan Castle of the transfer window podcast has revealed what a former Southampton player Jose Fonte and a team mate said of the Liverpool target amid speculation of a move to Anfield.

According to Castles Portuguese international Jose Fonte from his experience, playing against Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk believes 20-year-old Botman is the best of all centre-half he has played with on the pitch.

"One other thing I think will be interesting to Liverpool supporters is that Botman plays alongside veteran Portugal defender Jose Fonte at Lille this season," said Castles.

"Fonte has played with an array of top-class centre-backs in his career including Virgil van Dijk, Toby Alderweireld, Pepe in the Portuguese national team and Gabriel last season who is now at Arsenal.

"From what I understand of Fonte's impression of Botman, he thinks he's the best of all of them.

"He describes him as a machine and a man who doesn't make mistakes and also indicates that for a young player playing alongside an experienced professional, he's very open to learning and taking instruction and improving his game.

"These are attributes you look for in a signing and are the kind of attributes Liverpool have been very focused on when they've recruited players in the past.

"You can see why they're having conversations there and you can see from the cost perspective why it seems to be a good potential fit for that January deal.

"Called up to the full Netherlands international squad in November, he's still very young, turns 21 next month. He's tall and quick and I think this is one of the things that factors into Liverpool's assessment, he's incredibly strong one-on-one.

"In one statistical analysis he's the best one-on-one duels in the big five leagues across Europe this season."

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