Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk has given his view following the news that his international compatriot Donny van de Beek is set to join rivals Manchester United.
Van de Beek, 23, is expected to sign for The Red Devils after a deal was agreed between United and Ajax.
The Telegraph reports the agreed transfer fee is to be in the region of £39.3 million.
The versatile attacking midfielder is currently on international duty with the Dutch squad but was allowed to undergo a medical in the Netherland’s on Monday.
Van Dijk and Van de Beek are both expected to feature during the Dutch national team’s opening Nations League fixtures against Poland and Italy respectively.
The 28-year-old Liverpool star was full of praise for his international teammate who is closing in on a ‘dream’ move to United even if it is to the Reds’ fierce north-west rivals.
“[The transfer] looks like it’s going to happen indeed,” Van Dijk told reporters on Monday as per The Evening Standard.
“From my heart, I wish him the best. It’s wonderful for him, it’s a nice step for him to move to a great club as a Dutch player.
“Also the same for Nathan Ake, who moves to Manchester City. I’m glad for both of them.”
What RTK has to say
Given Liverpool’s recent unrivalled success, we feel there is no need for a bitter taste to be left despite our old rivals closing in on a potential bargain this summer window.
Van de Beek would have fit the ideal profile of a typical Jurgen Klopp player given his versatility and physicality since graduating from the Ajax academy.
The Dutchman has 40 goals during the last three seasons in Holland while adding another 30 assists which is an eye-watering total for a 23-year-old midfielder.
However, the reality behind Liverpool’s lack of interest in Van de Beek stems from a more urgent need from our rivals to bridge the gap between themselves and Klopp’s Reds.
Liverpool have an array of options in midfield as well as a systematic approach that has proven widely successful over the previous two seasons.
While Van de Beek would have been a welcomed addition it’s difficult for Liverpool and Klopp to justify signing players in areas of the squad where there is already limited space.
It’s also worth noting that United signing Van de Beek doesn’t oppose an immediate threat to Liverpool’s title defence next season.
United aren’t exactly lacking a midfielder who can contribute goals and assists given their recruitment of Bruno Fernandes in January. They also have Paul Pogba at their disposal.
Given that United play with a midfield three, it seems like a transfer that doesn’t fulfil an urgent need for Ole Gunner Solskjaer’s team to close in on Liverpool next season.
With that said, only time will tell whether United have bagged themselves a potential gamechanger. As good as Van de Beek is, we feel he isn’t someone who raises an immediate threat to Liverpool’s title defence next season.
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