Crazy fees won't stop - Puyol on Liverpool's Van Dijk raid

Carles Puyol was one of Europe's greatest defenders but could never have imagined transfers like Virgil van Dijk's £75m move to Liverpool.

Virgil van Dijk's transfer fee of £75m is £25m more than the next-highest for a central defender (David Luiz).   -  Getty Images

Former Barcelona captain Carles Puyol believes the £75million fee agreed between Liverpool and Southampton for centre-back Virgil van Dijk is the result of a "crazy" market.

Liverpool announced on Wednesday it had secured the services of the 26-year-old Netherlands international, who it failed to land during the close season, and his January arrival at Anfield will make him the most expensive defender in football history.

Puyol is widely regarded as one of the finest defenders of the modern era following a career-spanning stint with Barca that yielded a host of honours, including six La Liga crowns and three Champions League titles.

The 39-year-old has no qualms over players cashing in on the vast riches the game has to offer today but, speaking at the Dubai International Sports Conference, he conceded such spiralling fees were not credible in the recent past.

Read: Liverpool lands van Dijk in world record transfer

"Yes, the players deserve this amount of money, this is how the market is, this is how demand is," Puyol said.

"The amounts are crazy, but this is the market. And I don't think this will stop. Yesterday, Virgil van Dijk was bought for £75m. Years ago, this was impossible."

Van Dijk will officially become a Liverpool player on January 1, when Jurgen Klopp's side travels to Burnley.