Charlie Austin Praises Departing Teammate Virgil van Dijk Ahead of Impending Liverpool Switch

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On Wednesday evening one of the most dramatic transfer sagas of the summer was brought to a close as Liverpool finally got their man, signing Southampton man Virgil van Dijk for a record £75m.

The Dutchman was the subject of much interest from clubs across the Premier League, including runway title favourites Manchester City and reigning champions Chelsea. However, Van Dijk eventually signed for Liverpool, seeing him become the most expensive defender in the world.


The deal for Van Dijk comes after a summer transfer saga, abundant in twists and turns, saw the defender go as far as to place a formal transfer request in an attempt to get his move, although his efforts proved futile, seeing him remain a Saints player for another six months until finally getting his desired move.

Southampton signed Van Dijk from Celtic for £13m in January 2015 and will net a tidy £61.4m profit on the defender.

While many critics remain sceptical regarding Van Dijk's price tag, there are many admirers out there who feel Liverpool have signed a truly quality player, one of them being Saints teammate and boyhood Reds fan Charlie Austin.

Austin took to Twitter to wish his Saints teammate good luck in the future, writing: "Absolute pleasure to play with Virgil van Dijk deserves all success in the future, one of if not the best centre back in the league all the best big man."

When asked further by a Liverpool fan if he truly believed Van Dijk was the best centre back in the country, Austin's reply was as succinct as they come, saying: "[Y]es I do".

The £75m deal for Van Dijk sees Liverpool break their record transfer fee for the third time since the summer, with deals for both Mohamed Salah and Naby Keita breaking the £35m record set by Andy Carroll in January 2011.

Van Dijk will officially become a Liverpool player once the transfer window opens on Monday, with the Dutchman being eligible to play for the Reds in both the FA Cup and the Champions League.