Chelsea play Liverpool this afternoon and one of the major battles on the pitch that the Blues will have to win will be getting the better of Virgil van Dijk.
Although most Chelsea supporters would back Eden Hazard to be the PFA Player of the Year, the majority of bookies have the Dutchman as the favourite for the prize.
Even so, striker Olivier Giroud doesn’t think van Dijk should intimidate the Blues’ forward line. The Frenchman says he has played against the centre-back on a number of occasions and come out on top:
“I played against him personally a few times and it has always been a tough position because he is very good and very strong, but I’ve scored a few goals playing against his teams.”
“[I played against him in] the Netherlands when we played recently but I won last year and scored at Stamford Bridge and scored the winner at the Stade de France against the Netherlands a few months ago.”
“We don’t have to be scared and no matter who plays we will be 100% focused on winning the game.”
The Frenchman’s form in the Europa League this season has led many supporters wanting the striker to start ahead of Gonzalo Higuain in league matches.
However, as Giroud started the 1-0 win over Slavia Prague on Thursday night, it’s more likely than not that he’ll be on the bench at Anfield.
Considering his past record against van Dijk, perhaps a re-think is in order from manager Maurizio Sarri?