Fabinho managed to appear solid at the heart of Liverpool’s defense in the match against Ajax, so the public considered him worthy of being the successor to Van Dijk who was on the sidelines due to injury. However, Rio Ferdinand was reluctant to draw conclusions too quickly.
Van Dijk is indeed seriously injured due to Jordan Pickford’s horror tackle in the Marseyside Derby match last weekend. Liverpool were confused about finding a replacement for the Dutch defender.
But in the end, in the first matchdays of the European Champions League Group phase against Ajax at dawn WIB, Klopp fielded Fabinho from the first minute in Van Dijk’s usual position.
Although not a center-back, the Brazilian appears to be doing his job very well. He helped Alisson Becker keep the net from conceding until the game was over, where Liverpool managed to win 1-0.
With this impressive performance, the former AS Monaco player received a lot of praise, in fact he was considered to have replaced Van Dijk’s role.
However, Rio Ferdinand did not agree, because according to him it was too quick to draw conclusions from just one match.
“Look, this guy is a top operator. He also played at right-back a lot when he was at Monaco, so he knows how to defend,”
“But he can only be judged by one season, not just a few games – now he has had the opportunity to be there for a long time. And he has to provide consistent evidence,” Ferdinand told BT Sport.
Furthermore, Ferdinand considered that Fabinho faced great pressure because he replaced Van Dijk, who is considered the best defender in the world today.
“The problem is he has to replace one of the best defenders in the world, or the best defender in the world today. That is a lot of pressure, not only for him but for Joe Gomez as well.”
“This could be pressure because he is a pure defender, he will be highlighted with the hope of being the leader of the defense now – can he do that? That’s the question that has to be asked.”