Rafael van der Vaart slates 3 ‘very normal’ Liverpool players ahead of Ajax tie

Former Tottenham star Rafael van der Vaart has hit out at three "very normal" Liverpool players ahead the Reds' Champions League tie with Ajax on Tuesday evening.

The outspoken Dutchman, who began his career at the Johan Cruyff Arena, said he thought Jordan Henderson was vastly overrated, and that he didn't think much of James Milner or Joe Gomez either.

"I think we have become a bit blinded. We suddenly think Jordan Henderson is a crazy player, [he's] just a very normal player," Van der Vaart argued.

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"James Milner is also a very normal player. Joe Gomez is also a very normal player."

His comments come amid a bit of crisis for Liverpool in midfield. Thiago Alcantara and Naby Keita have spent the first few weeks of the season out injured and Jurgen Klopp has had to rely on inexperienced stars like Harvey Elliott and Fabio Carvalho to step up in their place.

Despite the youngsters' best efforts, Liverpool have made a rocky start to the new campaign, winning just two of their opening six Premier League matches and getting thumped by Napoli in the Champions League.

Would prime Van der Vaart get in Liverpool's team? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

Van der Vaart's comments aside, Henderson has been a regular fixture in Liverpool's team for over a decade and as club captain has lifted every major piece of silverware available to him – aside from the Europa League.

Milner meanwhile has performed well above expectations since joining from Manchester City in 2015, becoming an effective problem solver for the Reds, ably filling wherever he's needed.

Gomez on the other hand has struggled to nail down a starting spot at Anfield, particularly in the last couple of years, and while injuries to Joel Matip and Ibrahima have afforded him a run in the side this season, he's looked a little shaky.

Van der Vaart spent just two seasons in the Premier League with Tottenham, though became an instant fan favourite after netting 28 goals. He also had stints at Real Madrid, Hamburg and Real Betis, before hanging up his boots in 2019.


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