FORMER Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk has scoffed at claims Liverpool are potential Premier League champions – after only ONE game.

The Dutch centre-half, who left the Hoops in a £13.5million deal for Southampton three years ago before his record-breaking £75million switch to Anfield in January, insisted it is far too early for title talk.

Jurgen Klopp’s expensively-assembled line-up began the new season in impressive form with a landslide 4-0 triumph over West Ham on Merseyside at the weekend.

Van Djik was delighted with the performance, but urged his team-mates to remain grounded ahead of Monday night’s trip to Crystal Palace.

He said: “We’ve seen the media writing about us as the new champions and stuff, but we don’t really look at those things. We need to just focus game by game.

“We want to do well. We want to achieve greater things so we need to be ready for any challenge, any battle that comes to us.”

The classy back-four operator admitted he is not concerned about defending champions Manchester City.

He insisted: “For us, it is key that we don’t look too much at other teams. We need to look at ourselves and be ready every week for any opponent we face.”

Klopp splashed a remarkable £177million this summer on four new signings, three of which made their competitive debuts for the club against the Hammers.

Alisson and Naby Keita both started while Xherdan Shaqiri came off the bench in the second-half, with only Fabinho unused.

Van Dijk reckons the new signings have settled well thanks to the welcoming atmosphere around Anfield.

He added: “”Personally, it was very easy for me to settle in. How the boys treat you, how the staff are, how everyone around this beautiful club is and, of course, the fans.”


About Author


Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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