Puel: Van Dijk can become the best in the world

Virgil van Dijk

Leicester City manager Claude Puel believes new Liverpool signing Virgil van Dijk has the potential to become the best defender in the world.

Puel, who worked with the Dutch centre-back during his time at Southampton, has backed the 26-year-old to make the most of his £75m transfer and live up to the potential he has shown.

Puel said, as quoted by talkSPORT: "He is one of the best defenders in the world and he has all the qualities to become the best. It is fantastic for Liverpool.

"He can play in different good teams and it is a good reward for him. At the beginning of the season it is difficult for him because he wants to join another club but now he will find his level. I am happy for him and happy he can't play against us.

"Of course I don't know if it is the right price but he is a fantastic player, fantastic defender. I had him for six months and then for the last six months he was injured.

"In those first six months he made progress and he has all the qualities. He is a strong character and personality."

Leicester will travel to Anfield on Saturday to face the Reds, who will only have Van Dijk available to play from Monday, January 1.