Virgil van Dijk says Arne Slot’s ‘philosophy’ could suit Liverpool

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Virgil van Dijk says Feyenoord head coach Arne Slot’s footballing “philosophy” makes him an appropriate candidate to become Jurgen Klopp’s successor at Liverpool.

The Athletic reported on Wednesday that Liverpool have had an opening bid for Slot rejected after making the Dutchman their preferred choice to replace Klopp — who will step down at the end of the season after nine years at the helm.

An opening offer of €9million (£7.7m, $9.6m) was knocked back, with Fenway Sports Group’s CEO of football Michael Edwards and new sporting director Richard Hughes leading the negotiations with Feyenoord CEO Dennis te Kloese.

Liverpool are also in contact with Slot — who is enthusiastic at the prospect of taking over at Anfield.

Van Dijk was asked about reports linking his fellow countryman with the top job after Liverpool’s 2-0 defeat to Everton on Wednesday evening.

“I find it hard to answer of course, but I think Arne Slot is perhaps one of the better Dutch coaches at this moment,” Van Dijk told Viaplay.

He added: “I think the way of playing and the philosophy he has, that he could be a Liverpool coach.

“Only I think from what I read and hear is that it’s still far from being completed. We shall see.”

Wednesday’s defeat to Everton was Liverpool’s first in the Merseyside derby at Goodison Park since 2010 and all-but ended their hopes of lifting a second Premier League trophy under Klopp.

The 32-year-old defender said Liverpool “have no chance to win the title” if they fail to show more effort in their four remaining fixtures in Klopp’s farewell season.

“I think everyone needs to take a look in the mirror and look at their own performance if they really gave everything and if they really want to win the league,” he said.

He added: “Games likes these, the bare minimum is fight. We were lacking that at so many moments in games; small challenges, some passes that were not clear so we came into challenges that they win and they get momentum out of it.

“Now it’s time to recover and pick ourselves up again because we have to do it for ourselves, the club and the fans. It’s not only that you go out there and play your game, you have to do much more than that.”

Liverpool — second in the table, three points behind leaders Arsenal — return to action against West Ham United on Saturday.

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