Manchester United have been dealt a blow in their alleged pursuit of Virgil van Dijk after the Celtic defender talked up the possibility of a move to Arsenal, claiming that the north London club is "amazing".
The Daily Star on Sunday carries quotes from the recently capped Holland international which intimate a desire to leave Celtic Park when the transfer window reopens in January, after attracting admiring glances from a number of Premier League suitors.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has been credited with an interest in taking the 23-year-old to the Emirates Stadium as he looks to strengthen his defensive department at the turn of the year.
With a relatively modest valuation believed to be in the region of £10 million, Arsenal's prospective move for Van Dijk is a realistic proposition, particularly given Wenger's failure to find a replacement for former captain Thomas Vermaelen during the summer.
The player's positive comments will also add more fuel to the speculation, with the Dutchman seemingly keen to leave Scotland and take on a new challenge south of the border.
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"Arsenal are an amazing club.
"It’s a big club with a great history. I’m happy here just now and I want to play well and we’ll see what happens in the future.
"Until there are bids I can’t say thing. There is no rush to leave but you never know in the future."
Louis van Gaal has also been linked with a bid for his compatriot as the Red Devils' defensive frailties show no signs of easing up. However, judging by Van Dijk's latest quotes he'll face an uphill struggle convincing the centre-back to move to Old Trafford if Arsenal are in for his signature next year.