Jurgen Klopp and Jamie Carragher have suggested that Virgil van Dijk will not start immediately at Liverpool.
Liverpool confirmed the signing of Van Dijk earlier this week, with the £75m world-record deal going through on January 1.
The experts have offered their verdicts on the deal, which the Reds will hope shores up their leaky defence.
But both Klopp and Carragher believe that he will not be an instant starter at Anfield, with the former describing the deal as “a long-term thing”.
“It was probably not his best half of the season at Southampton,” Klopp told Sky Sports. “He was injured and then we know about the things that happened last summer. A tall player always needs a little longer, especially after nine months. He needs to get rhythm. That is no problem.
“We have all that quality here in this position so do not need to rush anything. He has to adapt to our style of play. It is different, completely different, but we are 100 per cent sure he will do it. I am very happy it is finally done but there is no rush.”
Carragher echoed the manager’s sentiments.
“Will he help Liverpool finish in the top four? Yes, it’s more likely because they’ve now got a better defender than what they had before,” said the former defender.
“But, I think looking at Van Dijk these last few months, I think he’s got to get fitter. Maybe he could lose a few pounds as he’s not been playing much.
“I’m not sure he’ll go straight in. As we’ve seen, Jurgen Klopp likes to rotate, and will want to get him on the training ground and see him right.
“Once he does, I don’t think he’ll be dislodged.”