It is reported that Arsenal will return to try and prise Virgil Van Dijk away from Southampton within 12 months.
The Dutch defender was eager to force away from St Mary’s Stadium this summer, handing in a transfer request in the close-season, before Liverpool were forced to issue a public apology over their pursuit.
The Reds moved to talk to the player’s agent prior to requesting permission from the south-coast club, and the Saints moved to refuse the defender to move clubs from that point forward.
It emerged this week that VVD is believed to have agreed terms with two of Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool this summer, only to have Southampton block any move, and they even forced him to then train alone throughout the summer.
Van Dijk is now set to return to first-team training, with a view to picking up his fitness before returning to action, and it is claimed that the summer saga will not have distracted the trio from their pursuit of the player.
Southampton are said to be keen on keeping the 26 year-old until next summer at the earliest, before relaxing their stance on his future.
Both Liverpool and the Gunners failed to sign any central defenders during the previous window, and could well be likely to eye a central addition in January, but Manuel Pellegrini’s side are said to be in preference of a full season.
Could Van Dijk push to leave this winter? Would Arsenal pay the fee needed to prise the top defender from the Saints?