Liverpool have completed the signing of Virgil van Dijk in a £75 million fee from Southampton.
Fans were stunned by how well hidden Liverpool managed to complete the move.
At 4:59pm, the Telegraph reported that a fee had been agreed. At 5:59pm, Liverpool announced the transfer on Twitter.
The Telegraph’s report claims the two clubs have spent the past few days negotiating a fee and the £75m that Southampton will receive is a world-record amount for a defender.
The club have been criticised for spending so much money but they really shouldn’t be. Jurgen Klopp, just as Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have, has done what was needed to improve his squad.
Van Dijk will move to Anfield once the transfer window opens on January 1, 2018, but he will not make his debut in the New Year’s Day clash at Burnley.
Liverpool can register the defender on January 2, meaning the first game he will be available for is, yes, the Merseyside derby in the FA Cup on January 5.
What Gary Neville has said about Van Dijk's fee
Gary Neville was among those to react to the news.
The Manchester United legend pundit raised an excellent point about the transfer, pointing out that nobody will talk about the fee if Van Dijk helps Liverpool win trophies.
"It's a lot of money! When I first heard it I thought 'wow, £75m'. I'm not surprised by the actual transfer but that is an incredible amount of money,” Neville said on Sky Sports.
"Liverpool need defenders and have to pay to get him. That's the way the market is and it isn't going to change.
"It sounds like a fantastic deal for Southampton. But if Liverpool can stop their creaking in big matches when put under pressure then it will be a good deal for Liverpool as well because people will forget about the money that has been spent in a year or two if they can win trophies and get the defence right.
"Liverpool have to get the defence right, in the bigger matches they do stress quite quickly and can crack, so from their point of view, paying that sort of money hopefully it pays off, but for Southampton they would snap your hand off for £75m.
"Over the last few years they have lost some good players for good money but nothing at this level. It seems like a fantastic sell.
"I was surprised in the summer when I saw £50m for Kyle Walker but he has done brilliantly and it's just the way the market has shifted to an incredible level that shocked me."
Van Dijk's Wikipedia page was edited
Shortly before the transfer was announced, Van Dijk’s Wikipedia page was edited by a mischievous Liverpool fan.
Another paragraph was added to Van Dijk’s intro. It read: “In January 2018 he joined Liverpool after months of begging Southampton for a transfer to the Reds.
“He moved to Liverpool for £75,000,000, where he will help lift the Champions League for a British record 6th time.”
Seeing Van Dijk hoisting the Champions League trophy is literally the dream of every single Liverpool supporter.
While his fee has come under heavy scrutiny, one man who believes Liverpool are justified in paying such a hefty amount is former Wales and Cardiff City defender Danny Gabbidon, who has raised an interesting point on Twitter.
“75 Million a lot of money for VVD?? I look at it this way he’s double the player Lindelof is so the fee is probably about right. 🤷🏼♂️,” he wrote.
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