Liverpool Remain Keen on Sole Centre Back Target Van Dijk as Report Claims Defender Requests Move

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​Southampton centre-back Virgil van Dijk has reportedly told the club that he wants to leave St Mary's and join Liverpool, while the Dutch star remains the Reds' only target to strengthen in the centre of defence this transfer window.

At one point earlier this summer, a £50-60m deal for Van Dijk seemed all but done. However, controversy arose when Southampton complained to the FA about Liverpool illegal approach of their star defender - resulting in the Reds (seemingly) ending their pursuit of the 26-year-old and issuing an embarrassing public apology.

However, ​​Times journalist Paul Joyce has now indicated that a deal may be back on after the former Celtic man returned to training for pre-season with new manager Mauricio Pellegrino and reiterated his desire to be allowed to join Liverpool.


In addition, the ​Times' Paul Joyce claims Jurgen Klopp and the Liverpool hierarchy are still very much interested in the player (despite their public come down) and interestingly will not pursue other centre backs if van Dijk cannot be purchased.

With previous club stalwart Lucas Leiva leaving the club for Lazio, Liverpool are somewhat short on defensive options, and the only current cover for first choice pairing Joel Matip and Dejan Lovren are Joe Gomez and Ragnar Klavan.

Van Dijk joined Southampton on the Saints' pre-season tour of Austria this month, but hasn't been involved in any matches so far, and is still apparently recovering from the injury he sustained at the end of last season.

A deal with Liverpool may well be within reaching distance. However, if the reports are to be believed, Liverpool may now have to up their bid to convince the Southampton board to sell.