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3 Virgil van Dijk replacments at Liverpool 3 long-term replacements for Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool

Virgil van Dijk has established himself as one of the most talented defenders in Europe since joining Liverpool from Southampton in 2018. He has played 191 games in all competitions for the Reds so far, registering 17 goals and 11 assists.Van Dijk also has 84 clean sheets in 203 Premier League appearances.


The Dutch international has helped the Merseyside outfit win several trophies — including one Premier League title and one UEFA Champions League trophy. He won the Premier League Player of the Season in 2019 and has also been part of the Premier League Team of the Season on three occasions.

However, he turned 31 this year and has shown some signs of decline this season. The Reds can’t depend on him for long and will need to sign his replacement going forward.

Let’s take a look at three defenders who can replace Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool.

#3 Armel Bella-Kotchap

Armel Bella-Kotchap likes to outmuscle his opponents
Armel Bella-Kotchap likes to outmuscle his opponents


According to, Liverpool are interested in signing Southampton’s Armel Bella-Kotchap as a replacement for Virgil van Dijk in the near future.

Bella-Kotchap has been impressive for the Saints since joining from VfL Bochum this summer. His key strengths are concentration, passing and good aerial ability. He has played seven Premier League games so far this season and has averaged 1.6 tackles, 2.4 interceptions and 4.6 clearances per 90 minutes (via WhoScored).

The defender’s performances at St. Mary’s Park also caught the attention of Germany manager Hansi Flick, who gave him his international debut last month.

Liverpool have signed several key players from Southampton in recent years, including Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk. They could raid the south coast club again to replace their star defender in the coming years.

#2 Josko Gvardiol

Josko Gvardiol is a key performer for RB Leipzig
Josko Gvardiol is a key performer for RB Leipzig

RB Leipzig’s Josko Gvardiol is currently among the most sought-after defenders in Europe.Gvardiol has established himself as one of the most talented defenders in the Bundesliga since his move from Dinamo Zagreb in 2020. He has made 55 appearances for the Red Bulls so far.


The Croatia international is a versatile defender who is capable of playing as a left-back or at centre-back. He is known for his passing and tackling ability, and reads the game well.

According to Who Scored, he has averaged 0.3 tackles, 0.5 interceptions and one clearance per 90 in the league this season. He has also completed 89.5 per cent of his attempted passes in the German top division.

However, the 20-year-old defender recently signed a long-term contract with the German club and will likely demand a hefty transfer fee to sell him.

#1 Ronald Araujo

Ronald Araujo is a key performer for Barcelona
Ronald Araujo is a key performer for Barcelona

Regarded as one of the most promising defenders in Europe, Ronald Araujo could be a perfect long-term replacement for Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool.Araujo has been a consistent performer for Barcelona since breaking into their first team during the 2020-21 season. The Uruguay international is lightning quick and plays with authority on the pitch. He is an exceptional passer of the ball and is also good in the air.The 23-year-old has played six games in the league and has averaged 1.3 tackles, 1.2 interceptions and 1.8 clearances per 90 in the league (via WhoScored). He also has a passing success rate of 87.3 per cent in La Liga.However, Araujo is a key player for the Blaugrana and recently signed a new contract at Camp Nou. It will take a lot of pursuation from Jurgen Klopp to bring him to Anfield.

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