Liverpool would have signed Virgil van Dijk during the summer transfer window- if Southampton manager Mauricio Pellegrino had got his way.
The Reds’ summer-long pursuit of the Dutchman failed to include lodging an official offer, with the Saints having shown no signs to suggest they were open to bids.
A failure to bring the club’s priority target to Anfield came after Liverpool had been subject to a complaint against an alleged illegal pursuit- for which they released a statement apologising and ‘ending all interest’ in the player.
Their interest did not end, however, with Van Dijk’s transfer request fuelling speculation that a deal may still be possible.
Pellegrino ‘would have happily sold Van Dijk’ after becoming frustrated with his efforts to leave, according to the Times.
After being forced to train alone having reiterated his wish to leave, Van Dijk proceeded to release a statement expressing his desire to play European football and continue his career elsewhere.
His efforts came to no avail though, with Southampton standing by their insistence that he would not be sold for any price.
The idea his manager would have been prepared to let him go comes as a frustrating late blow for Liverpool, who have already come under fire this season for familiar defensive frailties.
It now remains to be seen whether Klopp will reignite his interest in January.