Virgil van Dijk has today confirmed that he will not play for Holland at this summer’s Euro 2020 tournament.
The 29-year-old revealed to Liverpoolfc.com that he will instead be focusing fully on getting back to full fitness.
In his first interview since undergoing knee surgery last year, van Dijk said: “I have come to a decision that I had to make: would I be involved in the Euros, yes or no?
“With everything that is going on, I feel physically it is the right decision that I’ve decided not to go to the Euros and to go into my last phase of rehab during the off-season.
“So, the full focus will be on pre-season with the club and that’s a realistic goal.”
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Van Dijk continued: ” I am very gutted to miss the Euros, to miss the European Championship and leading out my own country there, but things have been like they have and I have to accept it.”
Van Dijk decision huge for Liverpool
The fact that van Dijk will not be playing at the Euros is great news for Liverpool.
If he were to rush back for the tournament, he could have hindered himself in the long term. Serious injuries, like ACL ruptures, need to be carefully managed.
With this decision, he will not be risking another injury by pushing himself to do too much too quickly.
Essentially, there is no chance that he could have been fully fit to play next month. If he is not going to be at his best, there is little point in him going at all.
Instead, he will be doing exactly what his club’s medical and coaching staff want. He can follow their plan without the added pressure coming from his national team’s set-up.
Hopefully, this will allow the centre-back to hit the ground running in 2021/22.
We all know how badly he has been missed.