Liverpool icon, Jamie Carragher, rates Manchester City defender, Ruben Dias higher than every centre-back in the English Premier League including Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk.
The Liverpool icon compares Dias with Van Dijk after the Portuguese international displayed yet another impressive performance Tuesday night helping Manchester City beat PSG 2-0 at Etihad to qualify for the Uefa Champions League final for the first time in history.
Carragher told CBS Sports, via the Daily Star:
I love him. I think he’s been the best player in the Premier League this season, I really do believe that.
I think he’s had a huge effect on Manchester City. Even when he speaks and you watch him play you can’t believe he’s 23.
John Stones next to him is 27-28 and you feel like it’s the other way around with John Stones and that’s no disrespect to John Stones.
Comparing Dias and Van Dijk – who has been one of the standout defenders in the top flight in recent years – the pundit considered that the Dutchman had better ‘physical attributes’, while Dias had to work harder to ensure he stays ahead of attackers and concentrates in the big moments. He added:
What I would say is that Van Dijk has been blessed with physical attributes that Dias hasn’t so in some ways I’m more impressed with Dias.
When you watch Van Dijk, it’s like watching a Rolls-Royce, you just think the way he moves. Most players don’t have that and Dias probably hasn’t got that so probably has to concentrate more and be side on constantly….
The biggest thing for a centre-back, in terms of body position, I think he (Dias)’s the best by a long way in the Premier League.’
The 23-year-old has transformed City’s defence since joining from Benfica for £62million last summer, bringing organisation and leadership to the backline and playing a huge role in their surge to the Premier League title.