By 90Min
January 15, 2018

New Liverpool signing Virgil van Dijk's uncle has claimed the reason his nephew only wears 'Virgil' on the back of his shirt is due to a troubled family upbringing. 

After completing the £75m move from Southampton to Anfield - which makes him the most expensive defender of all time - Van Dijk has a lot to live up to.

After completing the move, he told Liverpool's official club website: ''I am going to work hard every game, every day. I am going to give my everything, try to keep clean sheets and hopefully try and be a threat in front of goal as well.

''I think the main thing is just to organise, try to keep clean sheets. I will give everything I’ve got in every game.''

The towering Dutchman began to back up these claims almost instantly, scoring the winning goal in Liverpool's 2-1 FA Cup third round victory over rivals Everton in his first start.

Many have noticed that the former Celtic and Southampton star plays with only his first name on the back of his shirt. While some would assume this was purely by preference, his uncle Steven explained when speaking to The Sun, that there is another reason for his choice.

Clive Brunskill/GettyImages

''Virgil has done amazingly well to be such a success given the ups and downs there have been in his family. His dad split with his mother and his three children, including Virgil, found it hard to forgive him for that," Steven Fo Sieeuw said.

“The truth is his dad was not around for so many important years and it is his mother who is the real hero of this story.''

Van Dijk has had his say on these problems in the past. He told a Dutch Journalist in 2011: “I first lived with him [dad] for a while and after that I chose to go back with my mother. Then I broke all contact with my dad.

“At the beginning it wasn’t nice but I don’t need him any more. My father tried to re-establish contact but I don’t want to see him.''


Achieving such success is an impressive feat after such a tough upbringing. According to the reports in The Sun, Van Dijk began to repay his mother for all her hard work, by recently buying her a new house.

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