Despite comments that Southampton boss Claude Puel made during a press conference yesterday, Jürgen Klopp is confident of attracting Virgil Van Dijk to Liverpool this summer.
Speaking to the broadcast media ahead of a Premier League game with Arsenal, Claude Puel may have dealt a blow to Liverpool’s chances of signing Van Dijk.
“Virgil had a bad injury, but now it’s okay, his surgery is finished and he can work normally and go into the gym for rehabilitation and come back next season with us … with us,“ said Puel.
“He’s our captain and he’s important for us. He has matured and taken leadership on the team. He’s a fantastic player we know well.
“He’s important for us and now, of course, we will wait to the beginning of the season to see him on the pitch with Southampton.“
Despite what Puel said, The Daily Star reports that Jürgen Klopp remains confident that he can sign the Dutch centre-half this summer. Liverpool is in need of defensive reinforcements and has identified the former Celtic man as the right player to help take them forward.
The report from The Daily Star claims that Klopp believes if Liverpool finishes in the top four and offers Southampton £50 million then a deal can be struck.
And, somehow, with two games to go until the end of their Premier League season, Liverpool has the initiative in the race for Champions League football.
If each wins all their games, Liverpool will finish on 76 points, Arsenal on 75 and Manchester United on 74.
The crunch clash on Sunday at the Emirates saw Arsene Wenger take all three points from Jose Mourinho and could condemn the Portuguese and his club to a sixth place finish this season. With United still yet to play a Spurs side hurting after failing to catch Chelsea in the title race, Champions League football through the league is nigh on impossible for Manchester United.
Coming back to Van Dijk, should Liverpool secure top four football and snap him up this summer, Klopp’s side will look an entirely different proposition next season. A back four of Clyne, Matip, Van Dijk and a new left back with a left foot is exciting.
And despite recent reports, Van Dijk is Klopp’s primary defensive target, according to The Liverpool ECHO. Some were led to believe that Burnley’s Michael Keane was the main target for Liverpool this summer but The ECHO has indicated that this is not the case.
Heading into the summer transfer window, it’s imperative that Liverpool gets their recruitment absolutely spot on and signing Virgil Van Dijk for £50 million would be a statement of intent to the league’s big boys.