Liverpool will sign Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk - Craig Burley

Virgil van Dijk could be set to leave Southampton in the January transfer window

Virgil van Dijk could be set to leave Southampton in the January transfer window

Van Dijk, who has made 12 appearances for Southampton this season, was dropped by Pellegrino for Saturday's 1-0 defeat to Chelsea.

Van Dijk had started 11 successive games before the trip to Stamford Bridge and the timing of his omission will only increase talk of a potential January move away from Southampton.

The club's £70million asking price proved prohibitive, but there was concrete interest from Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City.

"I will repeat that I can't control the market".

"I can have my opinion and this I have give to the technical director, to the chairman my opinion". After that, the board can decide what is best for the team.

Antonio Conte has urged Premier League rivals to compete with Man City to sign Van Dijk
Antonio Conte has urged Premier League rivals to compete with Man City to sign Van Dijk

"We don't want to sign someone for three or four months, we want to sign them for years and makes sure they are the right guy, if this doesn't happen we are not going into the market".

"I will recommend to try to keep our best player here in the club. The club was clear in the beginning and I have the same opinion".

Indeed that lead to to City and Chelsea towing the line in their pursuit of the player, instead waiting before making their moves with van Dijk himself demanding a move and then going on strike before having to back-track and return to the squad once the window had closed.

The Echo report he said: "I can't say nothing about that because you never know what can happen in the future". Virgil Van Dijk is clearly a hugely talented player who would improve nearly any team on the planet but £70 million is a lot of money for a centre-back. He had a bad injury, but he has recovered very well'.

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