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Van Dijk At The Heart Of Saints Plans
Tuesday, 11th Jul 2017 11:19

Mauricio Pellegrino is planning for the new season with Virgil Van Dijk very much at the centre of his plans.

Although the media has been full of speculation for months, the hard truth is Saints have not had one actual offer for Virgil Van Dijk.

All of the transfer business so far regarding the Dutchman has been conducted in the media and that has given the impression that a move is imminent, but it has now been imminent for the last two months since the season ended, yet not one club has put in an offer !

The talk is of Van Dijk putting in a transfer request, but that is a last resort and Liverpool or for example any other club are yet to test Saints resolve with a firm offer, perhaps the Anfield Club are hoping that Saints will cave in under Van Dijk's (Alleged) demands for a move to Anfield and sell on the cheap.

Mauricio Pellegrino is therefore assuming that Van Dijk will be staying at St Mary's and is now planning that the Dutchman will be a Saints player next season.

Saints have made it clear they do not want to sell and for the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City they seem willing to take that as gospel, whereas at least one other club is trying to unsettle the player via the media.

Why that club has not put in a firm offer for a player whom they were briefing the media they had in the bag is unclear, but it is strange that if Van Dijk wants to move to them, that they haven't suggests that the deal is not as clear cut as the media would have you believe.

Given that the season is now only four weeks away you would think that any buying club and the player would want a quick solution, if that is the case then why hasn't a bid put into Saints to test their resolve, why has the situation suddenly jumped to trying to put prssure on Saints through the media by suggesting that a transfer request is imminent ?

It does suggest that the player is not as desperate to go as the buying club would have you believe.

But perhaps more pertinently if Van Dijk is so desperate to go, why has he not already put in this reqeust, one answer is of course that he would lose a 10% cut of the transfer fee should he put in that request, another answer would be that he has accepted Saints decision, even if he does not like it and is willing to stay for another season.

That would of course leave his potential new employer stranded and resorting to the underhand tactics that are now taking place.

Of course things could change, but as it stands the situation is crystal clear and there appears to be no reason to delay matters, either Liverpool or the player himself make a move or nothing happens.

Saints have been backed into a corner they have publicly stated that Van Dijk is not for sale and it is clear they are going to hold that stance, history tells us that deals between the two clubs in previous summers have happened long before mid July, it benefits no one to let the situation go on in limbo.

The key now appears to be Virgil Van Dijk, he can try and force the club's hand by demanding a transfer, but he is tied to a long term deal so he is not in a position of strength, also with a World Cup coming up next summer, he cannot afford to find himself isolated at St Mary's so if he wants to make the Dutch squad should they qualify he needs to be playing regularly and at the top of his game.

In fairness to Saints the strategy is based on developing players and selling them at a Premium, nothing wrong with that, they have proved in the past notably with both Wanyama and Morgan Schneiderlin that they will only sell if it is in the best interests and it could be that if a bid of £75 million plus is made they may think it best to cash in, but unless a bid is made they cannot make that decision.

The neutral observer might conclude that Liverpool are trying to get the player on the cheap by unsettling him rather than putting in a bid at markey value to open negotiations, that they think that Saints will take less for an unhappy player.

This has already backfired once so why they would think it would work a second time is beyond me, Saints are in a corner, they are in no modd to back down, this second situation developing is not helping that mood at St Mary's, why they think it will do is baffling.

Photo: Action Images

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SonicBoom added 11:43 - Jul 11
The media today say that City are still interested and Arsenal may join the "race". All a loads of balls unless someone actually makes a bid.

landerwal added 11:45 - Jul 11
Liverpool's tactics could be to get other clubs with an "interest" in VVD to drop out of the "race" to sign him by making it appear he has his heart set on playing at Anfield next season and nowhere else. Kloop has been reported in the press as saying he is in no hurry to sign new players as he wants quality, not quantity in his team so it could be a long summer before this "is he going or is he staying" saga is resolved.

kayfay66 added 11:51 - Jul 11
The minute LFC put in a bid for VVD SFC should resurrect tapping up claim. The only reason it was not pursued is the club accepted LFC's apology and promise their interest in VVD at an end. If LFC do put in a bid it is in violation of this promise and shows they have no principles, cannot be trusted and need to face a punishment. We should not have to give in to bully boy tactics from the "big clubs"

bstokesaint added 12:33 - Jul 11
If it is true VVD genuinely wants away (he did say a few months ago he was in no rush and was enjoying his football at SFC - which is line with him signing a contract extension) then maybe Les has said just see where he are at Christmas. With Liverpool out of the CL by then the draw might not be so big and with any luck, and in the event our season isn't going as well as we all hoped, then one of the Spanish giants might come calling and leave us with a bidding war with some of the current day giants. Liverpool seem desperate to get the player on the cheap which is just a p1sstake.

Hugh_Jarce added 12:39 - Jul 11
If we can get another season from VVD that would be great. But if we can get > £60m at any time and reinvest it then also great. We can't offer Champions League anytime soon

pintsizedsaint added 12:54 - Jul 11
Not sure about this 'Saints are in a corner' thing at the moment.

Given that Liverpool have publicly said they have ended all interest in the player following a clear case of tapping up, i cannot see them then submitting a bid on the back of no transfer request etc. If they did, expect SFC to revive their complaint/dossier of evidence with the added fact that LFC's so called 'apology' isn't worth the computer it was typed on.

Clearly the only way is a transfer request, but VVD forfeits 10% of transfer fee. Personally i don't think that would bother him given the riches involved, but perhaps its more the case that he knows SFC will reject it. All this ballacks about it being 'the end' if he submits a transfer request: SFC say no and then VVD has a choice: sulk or keep playing.

Somebody has got to make a stand. I see Arnautovic has thrown his toys out of the pram so will be interesting to see how Stoke handle it. Hopefully they will show the way for clubs to stand up and stop the farce that is so called 'player (agent) power'.

I think SFC are not in a corner here. I suspect VVD has resigned himself to another year at SFC. Up to him now - if he goes off the boil then he shouldn't be surprised if Liverpool's 'love' for him suddenly disappears....

Hopefully this is a new era for SFC. Transfers will only happen when it is mutually agreed. And players thinking of joining SFC for 1-2 seasons of 'shop window' will now be having their expectations managed.

IWOZTHERE added 13:36 - Jul 11
Several replacement options have already 'gone'. Much as I want him to stay, I hope they've had some sort of assurance from the player himself that he's put this behind him...If he 'kicks off' at the eleventh hour and we DO sell, there may be no sensible options out there, however much money we get... In that case it will be US who are stranded?
Are we just 'fannying around' pending the 'club sale'resolution? I don't like the sound of it, but it is likely that everything depends on it.If we are promised a substantial transfer kitty, we may be able to afford the couple of quality signings we need and VVD may be happy to stay? If it doesn't happen, the decision that he goes may have already been made? Either way, DO IT SOON, while some of our targets are still available!

Cjay80 added 14:33 - Jul 11
Is it impossible to think that actually he is happy where he is at the moment and not looking to move?

IWOZTHERE added 20:38 - Jul 11
Yes it is , Cjay. Treble the wages, Champion's League and more chance of trophies? He's not an unqualified Saints supporter like us... Grow up!

IWOZTHERE added 20:43 - Jul 11
The club needs to tick a few more of those boxes before we can keep quality players happy.

SaintBrock added 15:19 - Jul 13
It looked like Virgil was in charge of training for part of yesterday judging by on elf the pics coming out of the OS.

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