Liverpool’s interest in Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk has been well-publicised over the last two months with Jurgen Klopp set to bolster his defensive options in the summer transfer window.
The Dutchman has emerged as one of the Premier League’s standout centre-backs and looks certain to leave St Mary’s at the end of the season. Ever-present defensive issues at Liverpool, primarily brought about because of disruptive injuries, seem to have fuelled a desire to strengthen the club’s back line ahead of what many believe can be a period of success under Klopp.
Writing for joe.co.uk, respected journalist Tony Barrett said: “Liverpool are ready to challenge Chelsea and Manchester City for the signature of Virgil van Dijk, as the race to sign the Southampton defender continues to intensify.”
“Jurgen Klopp has identified van Dijk as his favoured option as he looks to bolster his defence this summer and with Liverpool’s prospects of securing Champions League football growing their hopes of being in a position to compete for the best available talent are also rising.”
“Southampton are resigned to the likelihood that this will be van Dijk’s final season at St Mary’s and value the 25-year-old at around £50 million.”
Defensive reinforcements seem a necessity heading into next season given Liverpool’s slump in form towards the beginning of 2017 and the regularity at which first choice centre-backs Joel Matip and Dejan Lovren pick up injuries.
Consistency across the back four is a must if this team is to compete with not only England’s top clubs but also Europe’s elite- providing we do qualify for the Champions League.
£50 million on Van Dijk would mark the big statement lots of Reds have been calling for and would represent Klopp going someway towards addressing the club’s needs.