Liverpool could sign Van Dijk clone in move for “special” 6ft 1 star

For the past two seasons, Liverpool have spent big in the January transfer window to address a key area of concern and boost the chances of success, but that probably won’t be the case this month.

Last season, Jurgen Klopp signed 2022 World Cup star Cody Gakpo in a £35m transfer to combat the looming departure of Anfield legend Roberto Firmino, strengthening a frontline that had one year prior combated Sadio Mane’s sale to Bayern Munich by swooping for mercurial FC Porto winger Luis Diaz, who joined for an initial fee of £37m.


While there are concerns around Liverpool’s defensive depth and rumours still persist regarding the Reds’ midfield (namely the signing of a specialist No. 6) after a summer of much change, high-flying Liverpool are not expected to spend big and instead will continue to rely on their existing options to maintain the four-front charge for silverware.

The Premier League table toppers will address their issues in the summer, however, and it would be safe to assume that the backline is Klopp’s priority, with Joel Matip out of contract at the end of the campaign and sidelined for the remainder of the season after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament last month.

Liverpool’s search for a defender

Multiple names have entered transfer circulation on Merseyside of late and two top targets both ply their trade in Portugal with Sporting Lisbon, with Goncalo Inacio and Ousmane Diomande on the radar.

The dynamic duo are not the only players earning Klopp’s attention, however, with CBS Sports reporter Ben Jacobs recently revealing on The Football Terrace that Chelsea’s Levi Colwill is of long-standing interest to Liverpool.


That said, the Stamford Bridge side are said to be determined to reject any advances that come their way, having rejected an offer from Liverpool last summer.

How Levi Colwill would fit in at Liverpool

Colwill rose to prominence in the Premier League last season on loan with Brighton & Hove Albion, playing 22 times across all competitions, completing 89% of his passes and winning 71% of his aerial duels in the Premier League, as per Sofascore.

The Seagulls sought to add him to the ranks permanently in the summer but, like Liverpool, they were turned away by Chelsea, with the 20-year-old now a mainstay in Mauricio Pochettino’s Blues squad.

The 6 foot 1 defender has largely been fielded at left-back this season to combat injuries to Ben Chilwell and Marc Cucurella and while he will yearn for a return to the centre of defence, Colwill has started 18 times in the Premier League this season, praised as “absolutely different class” by Chelsea reporter Simon Phillips.

As per FBref, Colwill ranks among the top 3% of positional peers across Europe’s top five leagues over the past year for assists, the top 9% for shot-creating actions, the top 19% for passes attempted and the top 11% for progressive carries per 90, showcasing his creativity and ball-playing aptitude.

Levi Colwill: Similar PL Players





Pau Torres

Aston Villa


Ezri Konsa

Aston Villa


Gabriel Magalhaes



Virgil van Dijk



Manuel Akanji

Manchester City

*Sourced via Football Transfers

The £100k-per-week ace is a player of immense technical quality and would be a credit to Liverpool’s system, especially given that the table above highlights his similarities to Reds captain Virgil van Dijk.

How Levi Colwill compares to Virgil van Dijk

Like Colwill, 32-year-old Van Dijk is one of European football’s most technically proficient defenders of the modern age, having won the whole gamut of silverware under Klopp’s guidance since signing for Liverpool from Southampton in a £75m transfer six years ago.

Arguably the world’s finest centre-half right now, the Netherlands skipper has been imperious this season as Liverpool fight for major honours and blends leadership with defensive superiority to provide his side with iron-clad protection in the rearguard.

Virgil van Dijk: PL Stats 23/24



Matches played






Clean sheets


Pass completion


Tackles per game


Interceptions per game


Clearances per game


Ball recoveries per game


Duel success rate


*Sourced via Sofascore

The £220k-per-week titan ranks among the top 6% of central defenders for assists, the top 13% for shot-creating actions, the top 5% for passes attempted, the top 9% for pass completion and the top 3% for aerial battles won per 90.

As shown through Colwill’s metrics earlier, the young Chelsea gem is aerially dominant, sublime with his passing skills and active in his defensive duties, having been hailed for his “special” abilities recently by journalist Tom Overend.

Van Dijk will hope to play a prominent role for Liverpool over the coming years but his influence will not last perpetually, and by signing Colwill, Klopp could land an even bigger talent than Jarell Quansah to boost his team.


Quansah has been praised for his “absolutely phenomenal” start to life at Anfield this season by Trent Alexander-Arnold after graduating from the academy and enjoying a successful loan spell with Bristol Rovers in League One last season.

Clocking up 15 displays, the 20-year-old has scored once and provided two assists, belying his lack of experience on the major stage with some commanding efforts, also ranking among the top 2% of centre-backs for goals scored, the top 1% for passes attempted, the top 9% for pass completion and the top 7% for aerial wins per 90.

A remarkable start to life in Liverpool’s senior set-up, and while he is a brilliant prospect, Colwill is demonstrably first-class as a rising defensive star and really could prove to be the perfect player to assume Van Dijk’s role in the years to come.

Of course, it would be hasty to claim that Colwill is capable of performing at Van Dijk’s level at this stage of his career, but his expansive skill set and left-footedness are two standout attributes that would make him a ready-made heir for the esteemed Dutchman.

Van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate make for a formidable defensive axis and Quansah will be eager to continue his rise to the fore over the coming years and edge closer toward a prominent position in Klopp’s team.

But further quality is needed and Colwill would be the Prem-proven talent capable of providing the presence to preserve Liverpool’s defensive strength for years to come, and if Chelsea’s stance on their player shows the slightest hint of weakening, a bid must be lodged.

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