Former Premier League midfielder David Prutton reckons Liverpool are at the head of the queue when it comes to the potential summer signing of Virgil van Dijk.
The Saints centre-back has been arguably the best in the country this season, combining physical strength with a coolness on the ball.
At 25, he’s entering his defensive prime and will undeniably be targeted by a number of big clubs this summer – with most in need of recruiting at the back.
Prutton reckons that because we’ve done plenty of business with Southampton in recent summers, should we fancy Van Dijk, we’ll have a good chance of getting the deal done – providing the money’s right…
Four of our current starting XI, Adam Lallana, Sadio Mane, Dejan Lovren and Nathaniel Clyne all signed from St. Mary’s.
“If you’re one of Manchester United, Manchester City, Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool you’d be foolish not to look at him,” Prutton told the Daily Star.
“Liverpool obviously have a good dialogue and a business relationship with Southampton, although I wouldn’t say that puts them at the front of the queue.
“You’d think from a business point of view, it probably gives them a head start when it comes to building a rapport and business relationship.
“But the most important word there is business. Liverpool would want to get him for the right price – and Southampton will want as much as they can get.”
We’d take Van Dijk in a heartbeat, but recognise he’ll be mighty expensive and possible out of our price-bracket.
With Lovren, Lucas and Joe Gomez fighting for a spot alongside Joel Matip, we’re pretty well covered at the back, but an injection of a potentially world-class operator would not go amiss.