Virgil van Dijk answered Liverpool’s prayers when he arrived at the club from Southampton in a record £75m deal in January.

The Reds had a poor defence as they regularly leaked goals and appeared vulnerable to opposing attacks.

When Van Dijk was thrown into Jurgen Klopp’s back line, a renewed sense of confidence emerged.

The Dutchman slotted in perfectly and was quick to impose his leadership skills by barking orders from deep.

Despite the 27-year-old’s presence improving the defence significantly, there are still question marks over his potential centre-back partners.

At the moment, Dejan Lovren has the role, but he is susceptible to mistakes, while Joel Matip has suffered with injury lately and Ragnar Klavan is not quite up to standard.

There is an argument for Joe Gomez to be blended into a centre-back, but there is a rival Premier League defender who could potentially do a decent job alongside Van Dijk.

Newcastle United captain Jamaal Lascelles is a big favourite of Rafael Benitez, who made the centre-back captain a few years ago.

It is unlikely that the Magpies would let their 6ft 2in tall skipper leave without a fight, but we asked you if he was the ideal partner for Liverpool’s defensive rock, and many fans back the pairing.

Danielle Joynson