​Virgil van Dijk has revealed that he voted for Premier League rival Raheem Sterling in this season's PFA Player of the Year award, with the race between the pair expected to be as close as the title race between their respective sides. 

Van Dijk has been exceptional for Liverpool this season, helping transform the Reds from a prolific but defensively suspect outfit to the Premier League's most solid at the back – conceding one goal fewer than Manchester City and a full 14 fewer than Chelsea and Tottenham behind them. 

The defensive transformation has made the Dutchman a favourite for the Player of the Year gong, but a defender hasn't won the award since John Terry in the 2004/05 season – and Van Dijk himself has admitted that he voted for ​City forward ​Sterling

Quoted by the ​Mirror this week, he said: “I am just being honest, I thought he deserves it. He’s had a fantastic season. He has improved a lot as a player. We will see if he wins it.”

He also admitted that he chose to move to ​Liverpool 18 months ago with the hope of winning trophies, adding: “I do a lot on my feelings. If I feel a certain way on something, that will be the decision I make. I follow the feeling, together with my family, and the feeling straight away was that this was the club for me. 

"I could definitely feel it, with the players we have here, the manager and the fans around the club. I definitely felt that we could challenge for trophies. I came last winter and to already be in the final of the ​Champions League was a bit of a surprise for myself. But it was something that I really wanted to happen.”