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Newcastle Defender Praises Liverpool And Netherlands Ace

Newcastle United defender Sven Botman has praised Liverpool centre back and fellow Dutch countryman Virgil van Dijk.

Botman completed a £34million move from Lille to the Magpies last week, and is a welcome addition to Eddie Howe's side's backline.

Speaking to Newcastle United's official website, Botman said: "Virgil is a great defender but I’m far from his level. 

"I think playing in the Premier League I can go faster to his level and I hope to be like him one day but I need a lot of time and a lot of matches. And I think Newcastle is a great environment to develop myself and become more like him.

Virgil van Dijk Villarreal

Virgil van Dijk in action for Liverpool

"I’m far from his level yet. I want to reach that, that’s my goal."

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The 22-year-old was heavily linked with a move to the Reds in January 2021, when Jurgen Klopp's side were in desperate need of reinforcements in the centre back position.

But instead, Klopp decided to bring in Turkish youngster Ozan Kabak on loan from Schalke.

Botman has been compared to a young van Dijk in the past, with his strength and power in aeriel duels, as well as his comfort with the ball ast his feet.

The young defender has a long road ahead of him if he wants to meet the standards that van Dijk has set over the last few years, but with time and the right guidance, he could become a top centre back in the Premier League.

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