Pep Guardiola has responded to claims Ruben Dias has been as impressive for Manchester City as Van Dijk has been for Liverpool.
Pep Guardiola agrees that Ruben Dias’ impact on Manchester City has been similar to that of Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool.
The City boss had good words for the Portuguese who joined from Benfica in a £65m deal back in September.
Dias has been a reliable and consistent name in the heart of City defence. So far, Guardiola says he is not surprised by the impact he has seen from the defender.
The Portuguese is one of the reasons City have the tightest backline in the Premier League.
Dias has helped them to keep 12 clean sheets in 18 matches. In all competitions, the Citizens have 17 shutouts in the 25 matches in which Dias has started.
These comparisons have seen the 23-year-old compared to Liverpool’s Virgil Van Dijk and Guardiola agrees they are not far off.
“He’s settled immediately. In terms of mentality and he’s a guy who lives 24 hours for his profession” said the City boss as quoted by Manchester Evening News.
“Every step he does, at home, on or off the pitch – eating, sleeping, recovering time, preparation time – everything is to be perfect during this 95-minute football game.”
“That’s why, while it depends on him to maintain and hopefully we can help him to grow, we are more than satisfied.”
Asked whether the impact of Dias could be likened to that of Van Dijk’s at Liverpool, Guardiola agreed.
“Yes absolutely” said Guardiola.
“He’s not just a player who plays good, he’s a player who makes the other guys play good too.”
“It’s 90 minutes talking, 90 minutes communicating, 90 minutes saying what they have to do in every single action.”
“When that happens, it’s difficult for me and he makes himself undroppable.”