DOHA, QATAR - Sunday, November 20, 2022: Netherlands and Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk (R) during a press conference at the Qatar National Convention Center ahead of the opening Group A game between Senegal and Netherlands during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Virgil van Dijk reaches World Cup last 16 as reported Liverpool target scores again

Netherlands booked their spot in the last 16 of the World Cup with a 2-0 victory over Qatar on Tuesday afternoon, with Virgil van Dijk the second Liverpool player to reach the knockout stages of the tournament.

Captain Van Dijk completed the full 90 minutes yet again, with Netherlands’ progression extending his stay in Qatar until Saturday at the very earliest.

Netherlands qualify as group winners, meaning they will play the runners-up from Group B, with the final matches from that group due to be played on Tuesday evening.

Should England finish second, that will set up a last-16 clash against the Netherlands, meaning Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson could come up against Van Dijk.

[Update: Netherlands will face USA in the last-16 after England beat Wales and USA beat Iran]

Van Dijk is the second Liverpool player to reach the knockout stages of the tournament so far, with Ibrahima Konate‘s France securing their place in the last 16 with victory over Denmark on Saturday. France are another team who could face Netherlands or England later in the tournament.

Cody Gakpo continued his record of scoring in every game at the tournament, with a host of Premier League clubs, including Liverpool, linked with the PSV forward in recent weeks.

ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - Tuesday, June 14, 2022: Netherlands' Cody Gakpo celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the UEFA Nations League Group A4 game between the Netherlands and Wales at the de Kuip Stadium. Netherlands won 3-2. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

According to Dutch outlet Voetbal International, Liverpool are set to enter into talks with Gakpo’s representatives, but will need to pay around €50 million if they’re to prize him away from Ruud van Nistelrooy’s side in January.

Man United have also been credited with an interest in the 23-year-old, who has 13 goals and 17 assists in 24 appearances for PSV this season.

Gakpo is predominantly used in a left sided attacking role for PSV, but has been deployed in a front two in Louis van Gaal’s preferred 3-5-2 system at the World Cup.

Such versatility is likely to appeal to Jurgen Klopp, and his Dutch assistant Pep Lijnders will be fully aware of Gakpo’s capabilities.

However, having emerged as one of the breakout players at the World Cup, there are certain to be plenty of other interested parties, and PSV’s asking price will only be on the rise.