Wolverhampton Wanderers captain Conor Coady is a “fantastic” talent but not the right man to replace Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool, Anfield legend Steve Nicol has told ESPN FC.
England’s newest centre-half certainly shares things in common with the Premier League-winning Dutchman.
In case we didn’t know already, the lack of a roaring Molineux crowd has given us an insight into just how influential a leader Coady is on the pitch, barking orders and cajoling his teammates throughout every game.
And, like Van Dijk, the Wolves skipper boasts the passing range of a top-class playmaker, perfecting the art of the 60-yard diagonal.
However, according to Nicol, that’s not enough to suggest former Liverpool youth captain Coady should return to his roots to replace the injury-hit Van Dijk at the heart of Jurgen Klopp’s back line.
“He has been a huge part of why Wolves have done well. His distribution out the back has been fantastic,” says the 1984 European Cup winner.
“I’d suggest he’s more of a sweeper than an actual centre-back and Virgil van Dijk does both these things. He’s a sweeper and he is a centre-back when it’s needed.
“I wouldn’t go and sign Coady but that’s not to say he hasn’t been fantastic for Wolves.”
Wolves, of course, have played with a back three almost exclusively since Nuno Espirito Santo took over as boss in 2017.
And while no-one is questioning Coady’s Premier League or international credentials, you wonder how he would adapt to a more traditional back four such as Liverpool’s.