A number of Southampton fans have been suggesting that Jannik Vestergaard is having a major impact for both the Saints and his native Denmark so far this campaign.
The Saints have not had a genuine top-quality centre-back to call upon since Virgil van Dijk’s departure to Liverpool. The Dutchman was outstanding at Southampton and averaged 6.8 clearances, 2.6 interceptions and 1.9 tackles per game in his final full season at St Mary’s in 2016/17 (via Sofascore). He has since gone onto lift the Champions League and Premier League titles.
Vestergaard started the first two Premier League games of the season on the bench, although he did come on at half-time with the Saints trailing at Crystal Palace on the opening day. However, the 28-year-old has since come back into the side and started to add a reliable presence in the back four (via TransferMarkt).
Since the defeat to Tottenham last month, Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side have not conceded a single goal and recorded back-to-back clean sheets in wins at Burnley and at home to West Brom. Vestergaard has contributed massively to that improvement, averaging 6.7 clearances and winning 83% of his duels so far this season, as per Sofascore.
The commanding 6 foot 6 (1.99m) centre-back has taken his club form onto the international stage over the last week, playing the full game as Denmark beat the Faroe Islands 4-0. He also came off the bench for the final 15 minutes in their 1-0 win against England in the UEFA Nations League on Wednesday, as per TransferMarkt.
Helping his national team record back-to-back clean sheets now means that the defender has played more than 300 minutes of football this season without conceding a goal. Many Saints fans were keen to highlight that fact on social media and heap praise on Vestergaard’s recent development.
Southampton fans react to Vestergaard impact
Another clean sheet for Vestergaard 👀 #SaintsFC
— LUKE RANNS (@RannsLuke) October 14, 2020
Vestergaard conceding a combined 3 goals in his last 9 games ranks him as the best defender in Europe for goals conceded per 90 in the same period of time (min of 5 apps). 0.3 GC/90 puts him a total of 1.7 GC/90 ahead of Van Dijk. #SaintsFC
— Scott Winter (@ScottWSFC) October 14, 2020
Now let’s please hold onto this one! We’ve actually found ourselves a strong, tall, beast with presence in the air! He could be the next Van Dijk!
— Samuel Roberts (@SamuelR75523948) October 15, 2020
Only conceded 3 in his last 6 starts last season too
— Saint Harris (@LHarrisSFC) October 14, 2020
Now adjusted to PL and showing his class. Theo will help this process with other players from abroad
— Robin Atkinson (@AtkinsonRobin52) October 14, 2020
If McGuire is worth 60 mil plus, just think what Vestergaard is worth now? In Ralph I trust
— Bob Weston (@BobWeston1) October 14, 2020
The danish maldini
— steve_inder_photography (@steve_inder_pho) October 15, 2020
Saints fans, is Vestergaard now Southampton’s best centre-back? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below!
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