Virgil van Dijk still wants to come to Liverpool and we still want to sign him, but if our failed pursuit from a few weeks back proves anything, it’s that nothing can be certain.
Southampton, who have the centre-back tied to a five-year contract, don’t have to sell – and may wish to prove a point by keeping him having already reported us to the Premier League regarding our illegal approach.
If the Dutchman does prove unattainable, Liverpool will still be prepared to spend big in this position – with it absolutely key for Jurgen Klopp to fix the defence ahead of next season’s Champions League campaign.
Dave Maddock in the Mirror claims that three world-class names are next on Klopp’s list: Bayern Munich’s Jerome Boateng, Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly and Juventus’s Leonardo Bonucci.
The former actually spent some time on the bench for Bayern last term and could possibly be attainable, although he’s 28-years-old and perhaps not played as well the past few seasons as during his 2014 peak.
Koulibaly is a man-mountain and the most like-for-like van Dijk replacement. He’s 6ft.5′ and combines power with decent technical attributes.
Bonucci is arguably the world’s best centre-back at the moment and we truly feel that Maddock’s thrown his name in for the sake of it. We won’t be signing the legendary Italian.
Of the names mooted, Koulibaly seems most realistic, although we still feel the van Dijk deal will be resurrected by August.