How reliable is John Cross, The Mirror’s number one football guy? I couldn’t say. Admittedly, this isn’t a terrific start, but maybe it’ll get better. It’s been said by Cross that Barcelona reached out to Virgil Van Dijk’s agent to suss out whether or not the Dutchman had any designs on being the heavy in Lionel Messi’s crew next season. Imagine that.
The approach was quickly rebuffed, if you still believe any of this is real. Cross stated that Van Dijk’s people dismissed the contact and Barcelona’s agents of darkness disappeared back into the shadows.
“Do not expect it to happen for a moment,” said Cross, “but Barcelona made enquiries about whether Virgil van Dijk could be tempted to leave Liverpool.
“They were quickly given short shrift by the Dutch defender’s representatives. They did not bother taking it further.”
It does seem to be a very Barcelona move to make, just to stir things up a bit. But Van Dijk isn’t going anywhere. He just won the Champions League. He wants to win the Premier League. He plays under the best manager in the world, for the best team in the world with the best cafeteria staff in the world.
Liverpool have seen plenty of players leave for Barcelona in search of glory over the years. Philippe Coutinho is the most recent but the Catalan club have long had a way of influencing players and getting the transfers they want regardless of tact. But the tide of influence may be shifting.
Jürgen Klopp has brought Liverpool back to the top of world football. His team is the envy of many a European club. There’s joy at Anfield, and unity and togetherness. Liverpool is a destination again, and a place to stay and win trophies but, perhaps most importantly, a place to give hugs and have fun.
“He’s our centre half. He’s our number 4. Watch him defend and watch him score. He can pass the ball calm as you like. He’s Virgil Van Dijk. Virgil Van Dijk.”