Richarlison names 3 defenders he feels are better than Virgil van Dijk ahead of Merseyside derby

Everton star Richarlison has today named three defenders whom he feels are a level above Virgil van Dijk, as the Brazilian prepares to face off against the Liverpool stalwart.

Liverpool visit Goodison

After Tottenham and Manchester United played out a 1-1 draw this evening, the next high-profile Premier League matchup of the weekend comes in the form of the Merseyside derby.

Liverpool are set to travel to Goodison Park on Sunday evening, as the Reds aim to take another step towards domestic glory.

Jurgen Klopp’s men will head into proceedings a staggering 22 points clear of 2nd-placed Manchester City in the Premier League table, despite the Citizens’ victory over Arsenal during the week.

As things stand, Liverpool require just 2 more wins to make absolutely sure of the club’s first league triumph in 30 years.

Everton, though, for obvious reasons, will head into Sunday’s showdown keen to make their city rivals’ wait for the title just a little bit longer.

The Toffees currently sit 12th in the English top-flight, though the presence of Carlo Ancelotti on the club’s bench will no doubt inspire belief that an upset in 2 days’ time is not beyond the realm of reality.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 21: Carlo Ancelotti, Manager of Everton is seen in the stands prior to the Premier League match between Everton FC and Arsenal FC at Goodison Park on December 21, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

‘There are better defenders’

One of the key matchups set to be played out at Goodison on Sunday night will see Richarlison face off against Virgil van Dijk.

Brazilian attacker Richarlison has long stood as one of Everton’s key performers, with the former Watford man’s goals having proven crucial to the Toffees cause over the last couple of seasons.

Liverpool stalwart van Dijk, meanwhile, is widely considered to be the Premier League’s best defender, with most of the opinion that the Dutchman currently stands as world football’s finest in his position.

Richarlison, though, certainly isn’t of such an opinion, and doesn’t appear to be overly concerned by the prospect of facing off against van Dijk this weekend.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 07: Richarlison of Everton celebrates scoring the opening goal during the Premier League match between Everton FC and Chelsea FC at Goodison Park on December 07, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)

Speaking in a recent interview with Desimpedidos, the Toffees star was drawn on the talents of Liverpool’s defensive lynchpin.

And, though he was quick to praise van Dijk, Richarlison subsequently went on to reveal his opinion that there are currently a number of superior stoppers across Europe:

‘People talk a lot about him, yes he is a great defender but I’ve already dribbled past him. He was chosen as one of the top three in the world as he had an excellent season.’

‘But yes, for me there are better defenders.’

When pressed for names, Richarlison continued:

‘Thiago Silva, Marquinhos and Sergio Ramos.’

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This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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