According to the bookmakers, the 2019 Ballon d’Or is a two-horse race – Lionel Messi and Virgil van Dijk.
As always, Messi has produced some incredible performances and helped his Barcelona side romp to La Liga victory.
But he couldn’t lead Barca to Champions League glory because they crashed out to Virgil van Dijk’s Liverpool.
The Premier League side went on to lift the Champions League with Van Dijk marshalling the defence superbly throughout the successful campaign.
It doesn’t take a football expert to watch Van Dijk play and think he’s pretty good.
But there’s a stat that backs it up too.
The fact that he hasn’t been dribbled past in SIXTY-FOUR appearances.
No wonder many fans consider the PFA Player of the Year the best defender in the world right now.
But do you know the last player to have dribbled past him?
It was former Newcastle player Mikel Merino back in March 2018.
And a video has emerged of that exact incident.
The clip just about catches Merino spinning Van Dijk during a Premier League match at Anfield.
It’s undeniable that he did give him the slip.
But just seconds later, Van Dijk got back and won the ball.
That just sums up how difficult it is to get away from Van Dijk.
Following his Champions League triumph, the defender will now be looking to lead Netherlands national side to glory in the UEFA Nations League.
And ahead of their semi-final against England on Thursday, he was asked about his freak dribbling stat.
“It’s not something I’m focusing on but I’ve read that as well. It’s something everyone is talking about,” he replied.
Will an England player be skilful enough and quick enough to take on Van Dijk?
If they do, they better watch out because Van Dijk will be snapping at their heels to get the ball back immediately.