Gullit urges Van Dijk to push for ‘goal’ to ‘horrify’ Klopp

Ruud Gullit has urged Virgil van Dijk to push for his goal of being fit to represent Holland in the European Championship this summer.

The Liverpool star has been sidelined since October following a knee injury picked up in a clash with Jordan Pickford in the Merseyside derby in October.

The Dutchman is now training outside on his own with the ball at his feet but Jurgen Klopp has continually urged caution in his recovery.

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But a report claimed that Van Dijk ‘has targeted the delayed Euros for a comeback’ this summer, news that is said to have ‘horrified’ Klopp and Liverpool.

But Dutch legend Gullit believes Van Dijk should keep that goal in mind and aim to play “a couple of matches” for Liverpool to rediscover his “rhythm” before representing his country this summer.

“I know for sure that if you saw the seriousness of the injury in the beginning, you already know that you’re not going to play a lot of games with Liverpool,” Gullit told beIN Sports.

He added: “But you need to have a goal when you have an injury, and his goal was to at least get fit for the Euros, if it’s possible.

“His doctors would say that as well, is it possible.

“Of course the club wants him at least to play a couple of matches before he does, I think in Holland we want that as well.

“I can understand that he has that goal, and I hope that he does get it.

“If he’s going to be fit, he doesn’t have a lot of rhythm, so it’s to be seen.

“For Holland, it’s the most important thing that he plays some matches already with Liverpool.”

But Klopp doesn’t agree and believes the extent of the injuries to Van Dijk and England’s Joe Gomez should rule them both out of the tournament this summer.

“It is not my decision but to be honest the information I have at the moment is that it will be unlikely,” Klopp said.

“So (it’s) not that I don’t let them go, because I don’t want to have to do that anyway, it is because of the extent of the injuries.

“We all hope they will be ready to start pre-season with us, that’s what we all hope. These are really serious injuries and it is now not about talking about which competition they play.

“I am always open for positive surprises and they all of a sudden turn up in team training – but no-one told me that.

“We will be completely over the moon when they are ready to train with us for the start of pre-season but the Euros, I didn’t think about it.

“When do you have to be back to be ready to play in the Euros? The week before? The day the Euros start? I don’t know.

“I understand maybe the need of that but we cannot make this decision and we will not. They will be fit when they are fit.”

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