Former Liverpool defender Sami Hyypia believes his old side need to 'think carefully' about how they strengthen the team, and does not believe the Reds need to sign Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk this summer.

Jurgen Klopp's men have already brought in England Under-20s striker Dominic Solanke and Egyptian winger Mohamed Salah this summer and are now believed to be pursuing a deal for the £70m-valued Naby Keita, who apparently has his heart set on a move to Anfield.

Liverpool are also hopeful of resurrecting a deal for Southampton's Van Dijk despite publicly and privately apologising to the Saints, who were angered by the Reds' pursuit of their captain.

Chelsea and Manchester City are also interested in the Netherlands international, who has recently been on his honeymoon, but Mauricio Pellegrino's men are in no mood to part with their coveted defender – who could cost a gargantuan £70m.

Van Dijk is believed to be keen on working with Klopp and was Liverpool's number one summer transfer target before last month's debacle. But Hyypia does not think a new centre-back is an essential signing for Liverpool this summer, and has called on Klopp and co to ensure the balance and chemistry at Anfield is unharmed by their summer business.

"I think it's important to strengthen the team every year," Hyypia told 5times. "You need to think carefully how you do it, that the chemistry is right and everything.

"I think nowadays the centre-backs are a bit different than before, that maybe the modern centre back, he is very good on the ball, he can play the ball, and maybe sometimes he has difficulties to defend.

Virgil Van Dijk
Liverpool do not need to sign the expensive Van Dijk this summer, according to Hyypia. Getty Images

"And of course you need to defend in the game, you don't have the ball all the time. Van Dijk is a very good player, I like him a lot, I think he has very good qualities in every area of the game, but I don't know if it's essential to sign him or to sign a centre back."

Klopp recently stressed the need for a bigger squad and, unlike Hyypia, sees a new centre-back as crucial to Liverpool's fortunes next season. The former Borussia Dortmund boss also sees Keita as a pivotal part of his plans for the upcoming campaign and is determined to push through a £70m deal for the Guinea international this summer.

Keita, 22, has a clause in his contract with RB Leipzig that allows him to leave for £48m next summer, but Klopp does not want to wait 12 months and hand Liverpool's rivals the chance to swoop.