Van Dijk named new Liverpool captain following Henderson exit
Virgil van Dijk has been appointed as Liverpool captain following the departure of Jordan Henderson, the Premier League club have announced.
The 32-year-old, who arrived at Anfield from Southampton in 2018 and has made 222 appearances, also performs the role internationally for the Netherlands.
Trent Alexander-Arnold has been confirmed as vice-captain after James Milner left to join Brighton earlier in the summer.
Henderson and Milner have departed as part of an overhaul of the team’s midfield as Jurgen Klopp looks to rebuild following last season’s disappointing fifth-place finish in the Premier League.
It meant the club failed to qualify for the Champions League for the first time since 2016.
“It has been a very disappointing year last year,” Van Dijk told the club website. “It was actually not a bad run-in. Obviously in the end we didn’t achieve anything we hoped to achieve and that was very disappointing.”
Of the players who were part of Klopp’s title-winning squad in 2020, Naby Keita and Roberto Firmino have also left, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been released following an injury-hit Reds career.
In their place, Brighton’s World Cup-winning midfielder Alexis Mac Allister has been signed along with Hungary international Dominik Szoboszlai from RB Leipzig.
“Obviously it has been quite an interesting summer with players obviously leaving and new players coming in, this little transition that is going on,” added Van Dijk.
“We also have to be a bit patient but we want to be there and we want to show what we’re capable of because we have a fantastic group of players, staff, fans, stadium, we shouldn’t even discuss that.”