Southampton, along with a number of clubs, are ready to finally launch a formal offer for highly-rated Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk, after the Scottish champions crashed out of the Champions League.
Van Dijk had been toying with the idea of moving away from Celtic, with the 24-year-old considering offers from Premier League clubs including Southampton, Sunderland and Everton.
deal to be done
According to the Guardian, fellow Dutchman Ronald Koeman is keen to wrap up the deal and make Van Dijk the third big signing in recent years to make the jump from Celtic to the Saints, following in the footsteps of Fraser Forster and Victor Wanyama.
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The player now looks destined to leave Celtic after a dismal performance by the Bhoys in their Champions League qualifier defeat against Malmo dumped them into the Europa League. Van Dijk can play in that if he moves to Southampton.
Premier League move
The progression to the Premier League is always a natural movement for talented players at Celtic, with the lack of competition domestically and the temptation of the bigger leagues a big draw.
Koeman is looking to close the deal before the end of the week and will need to act fast in order to beat rival clubs to the signature of one of Europe's fine young talents. Complementing Van Dijk's playing style, Southampton are the favourites to sign the ball playing centre-back.
An offer in the region of £10million would be enough to pry him away from Celtic and should be tabled before the end of week. With Southampton preparing themselves for the Europa League also, Van Dijk could end up facing Celtic in the competition if a move is to be agreed.
Celtic fans, is Van Dijk right to be seeking an exit? Is there anything to be done to stop him? Let us know in the comments box below.