Pep Guardiola hails "exceptional central defender" Virgil van Dijk

Guardiola hails
© SilverHub
Pep Guardiola believes that, much in the same way as John Stones over the last 16 months or so, Virgil van Dijk will shake off talk of being overvalued.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has insisted that Virgil van Dijk's transfer cost may look considerably less once he adapts to life at new club Liverpool.

Many top-flight managers have questioned the £75m valuation of the Netherlands international in the two days since an announcement was made, including Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho.

Guardiola admits that Liverpool are getting an "exceptional" centre-back, though, and a player that he believes could ultimately go on to justify the hefty outlay - a world-record fee for a defender, surpassing the £54m that took Kyle Walker from Tottenham Hotspur to Manchester City in the summer.

"It's about the guy, not the money," he told reporters. "I know that Liverpool took an amazing player. Van Dijk is an exceptional central defender.

"We will see in the future [if he was worth it]. Sometimes the cheaper players are more expensive than the expensive players. If he plays six, seven, eight years at a high, high level, it will be cheap. If he plays not good, it will be expensive.

"John Stones, when he came here, [people] said 'oh, it's too expensive'. Now, it's too cheap. [It] only depends on the value of what happens on the pitch."

Van Dijk had previously been linked with Man City, but Guardiola claims that he was never interested in the defender.

City skipper Vincent Kompany in action during the Premier League game between Brighton & Hove Albion and Manchester City on August 12, 2017
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