By 90Min
July 26, 2018

Football journalist Ian McGarry has claimed that Liverpool ace Virgil van Dijk has asked the club to find him a top quality new defensive partner for the upcoming 2018/19 campaign.

Speaking on the Transfer Window podcast, via the Express, McGarry claimed that the towering centre-back is eager for his side to secure a new central defender this summer. 

McGarry said: "I am told by people close to Van Dijk that he has requested a new central defensive partner through Jurgen Klopp. He wants the defence to be up to standard as it possibly can be.”

The Reds have already spent some major money in the transfer window so far, laying out a whopping £174m to bring in Brazilian star goalkeeper Alisson, midfield duo Naby Keïta and Fabinho, as well as former Stoke City winger Xherdan Shaqiri. However, Klopp may still be in the market for a top quality centre-back as he looks to improve his squad.

James Williamson - AMA/GettyImages

While the Merseysiders impressed with their potent attacking play last season, their defensive efforts often left much to be desired. Klopp has been outspoken over his desire to focus on the attacking element of the game, which at times proved costly to his side's endeavours. Van Dijk has bolstered the Reds' backline, but further improvements can be made.

It is unclear whether Liverpool will look to appease the Dutch defender, given the extent of their spending so far this summer. Dejan Lovren is currently Klopp's first choice to play alongside van Dijk, and the Croatian had an excellent World Cup campaign with the national team. However, the 29-year-old's error-prone nature remains a strong concern for Reds fans.

In other news, Manchester United boss José Mourinho has made a sly dig at Klopp, claiming that all the pressure is on his side to win the Premier League title following their big spending summer. The Portuguese manager cited Klopp's public turnaround on his philosophy of not spending vast sums of money, and claimed they now need to deliver the league title.

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