Southampton boss, Mauricio Pellegrino, now seems to be resigned to losing one of the top center backs in the league in Virgil van Dijk. The Dutch international has been held out of the Saints’ squad for the last two matches, and the rumor mill has been spinning wildly out of control.
“We have to wait until January. I can’t control the market, so we’ll see what happens,” Pellegrino said, addressing the unenviable situation. “I decided it’s best for the team and there has been a lot speculation.
“We win, draw and lose with and without Virgil. In this squad, I have a lot of players that can play. We are used to changes. We can’t use this performance as an excuse.
“We tried to do the best for the team. The board decided to try to keep our best player at the club. This situation is a big learning curve for everybody and now we decide what is the best for the club.
“He’s part of our club and he’s an important player for us, but we’ll see what happens. I can’t control the whispers and news from outside.”
Manchester City and Liverpool seem to be the clear favorites to land the want-away defender, although Chelsea has also been floated as a possible destination for Van Dijk.
If the rumors are to be believed, Southampton can expect £60-70 million for Van Dijk, possibly more if a bidding war kicks off in earnest. The only thing to do is wait impatiently for the calendar to turn, and hope for the best.