Manchester City Set To Fork Out £60m For Southampton's Van Dijk

Liverpool have been linked with Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk

Pellegrino, whose side have now won just once in their last 11 top-flight matches, also addressed whether the club's decision to rebuff Liverpool's earlier interest in Van Dijk had ultimately placed his first season in charge at St Mary's under a cloud.

But Southampton must be wishing they'd kept the former Lyon manager, with travelling supporters at Wembley today calling for Pellegrino's head after a crushing 5-2 defeat to Spurs.

Van Dijk joined Southampton from Celtic in 2015, signing a contract until 2022.

That would be a world-record fee for a defender, smashing the £52m Manchester City paid Monaco for Benjamin Mendy during the summer. And with the transfer window less than a week from opening it's doors, Virgil Van Dijk omission from the squad does fire up the transfer rumor mill.

Manchester City have emerged as frontrunners to complete a deal for Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk in January beating the likes of Barcelona, Liverpool and Chelsea in the process.

The report comes hot in the wake of news that Liverpool are reportedly close to agreeing to a deal with Southampton in signing the defender, according to the Sunday World via the Irish Independent.

Van Dijk, now 26, has made 11 appearances for the Saints this season, impressing in a season that has seen Mauricio Pellegrini's men struggle towards the bottom of the table.

Liverpool fans were quick to highlight this, with many naming Maguire as a better (and cheaper) alternative to long-rumored target Virgil van Dijk of Southampton. "I can't control the market, so we'll see what happens", said Pellegrino.

"We tried to do the best for the team".

He added: "The club decides which bid they accept, the player decides whether or not he goes to that club".

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