Southampton captain Virgil van Dijk has been excluded from the Saints’ summer training camp to be held in Evain-les-Bains, France.
Some more potentially good news for Liverpool Football Club in their pursuit of Virgil van Dijk?
The Southampton captain was banished to train alone last week after informing manager Mauricio Pellegrino that he would not be making himself available to play for the Saints.
Pellegrino reportedly told the media: “The boy said that he is not available to play because he wants to leave. This is the decision.”
The Dutch defender is said to still be keen on a move to Merseyside and is hoping that by going on strike, he can help to force it through.
However, the Reds while said to still be hell-bent on signing the defender, will only make their move if they receive genuine encouragement from Southampton.
The club issued an apology to Southampton last month after allegedly making an illegal approach for the player and being accused of ‘tapping up’ the Dutchman without the permission of his club and the Liverpool ECHO’s James Pearce claims that the Reds are going to “tread very carefully” when it comes to making a move for him.
While Southampton are said to be keen to hold onto the defender – why wouldn’t they be? he is their prize asset after all – it doesn’t look good for Pellegrino and it remains to be seen now whether the Argentine is going to be happy to keep an unsettled player at the club.
Incredibly, this story comes on the same day as reports that Liverpool’s other primary target Naby Keïta opted to take his own frustrations at a lack of progress made on his future out on a Leipzig teammate in a heated training session scuffle.
Both Southampton and Leipzig may continue their public stance that their players are not for sale but with both van Dijk and Keïta seemingly fed up and ready to move, they may just have no choice.