The Merseysiders' success this season has been largely attributed to van Dijk who moved to Anfield from St Mary's for an eye-watering £75 million back in January 2018.
But there is no room for Liverpool's Mohamed Salah or Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who have both scored 19 league goals this season.
The two have always been widely considered to be the only players in the race, though also nominated are Sterling's team-mates Sergio Aguero and Bernardo Silva, as well as fellow Liverpool player Sadio Mane, and Chelsea forward, Eden Hazard.
Since then, John Barnes ('88), Steven Gerrard ('06) and Luis Suarez ('14) were the other winners playing for Liverpool, up until Salah and now Van Dijk added their names to the roll call.
Members of England's players union determine their player of the year by vote, and the PFA will announce van Dijk as the victor Thursday.
Van Dijk has made 44 appearances in all competitions for Liverpool so far this season.
The official announcement won't be until Thursday with the PFA Awards ceremony taking place at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on Sunday evening.
On the previous two occasions Reds players have picked up the award the Premier League title has gone to the Etihad.
The PFA's rules state that to qualify for Young Player of the Year, a player must be no older than 23 years old at the start of the season.