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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will have his hands full this season and would like to bring in some more reinforcements to further bolster their chance at the Premier League title. The North London club have now reportedly focused their attention on Southampton’s wantaway star Virgil van Dijk according to the Daily Express.
Van Dijk has fallen out of favour with the Southampton hierarchy and is almost certain to leave the club by the end of the ongoing summer transfer window, after handing in an official transfer request.
The 26-year old was initially touted to complete a transfer to Liverpool. However, Jurgen Klopp is believed to have gotten carried away and had made contact with the player without permission from the Saints, which led to Liverpool being issued warnings.
The Merseyside club later backed off to avoid being punished for tapping up the defender.
With just a week until deadline day, Van Dijk will be desperate for a move to come through soon despite the club claiming that he is not for sale. The Dutchman is believed to be growing increasingly frustrated and is anxiously hoping for a deal.
Liverpool’s reluctance to approach the Dutch has prompted Arsenal to emerge as new favourites to sign Van Dijk. With Gabriel Paulista gone, and Inter Milan lurking for Shkodran Mustafi, Wenger is in dire need of a first-team centre back and could go all out for the Saints’ defender.
Latest reports suggest that Arsenal have, in fact, made contact with Van Dijk and his representatives to try and push a deal through before the transfer deadline. Southampton seems to be holding a rigid stance on the matter, but could let the defender go if they receive an offer that meets up with their valuation of the former Celtic man.
As things stand, Van Dijk refuses to train with the team and trains on his own, in solitude. The procurement of defender Wesley Hoedt could also convince the Saints’ to release him, and could see Van Dijk leave for an expected fee of £50 million.