Van Dijk says football shutdown will have made players consider retirement

Virgil van Dijk admits two months without football has forced him and other players to think about their lives post-retirement.

The Liverpool defender last took to the pitch in the Reds' 3-2 Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid on March 11, with football suspended around the globe almost ever since then in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Premier League still won't return for over a month in even the best case scenario, and Van Dijk says the absence of the game has put things into perspective for top-level players.

Asked by BT Sport if the shutdown has made him appreciate his status as footballer more, he said: "100 per cent.

"It's difficult to not be out there, to show our talents, to work hard, just the small things in the game. Also playing for so many fans, winning, the whole build-up to games, training sessions, just seeing the boys.

"We spend so much time together and all of a sudden now you're not together for like two months, almost.

"It's different, it's crazy, and it's something that you really haven't felt before, and it makes you appreciate things a little bit more."

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