Virgil van Dijk can leave Celtic for €12m

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Celtic have decided that star defender Virgil van Dijk can finally complete a long-rumoured move to the Premier League this month, if any of the many clubs linked with his signature match their €12m asking price for the Dutch international.

Van Dijk has been persistently mentioned as the potential long-term solution to both Arsenal and Manchester United's defensive woes in recent months, while more recently Liverpool, West Bromwich Albion and Newcastle United have monitored the centre-back's progress very closely in recent weeks.

The Hoops would ideally like to keep the promising 23-year-old until at the least the end of the season, but understands that they'll reluctantly sanction his long-rumoured transfer if they receive an offer matching their valuation over the next three weeks.

Time to move on?

A source confirmed to Goal that Celtic are pragmatists and will do business at the right price, but currently believe no club will meet their demands and remain quietly confident Van Dijk is more than happy to stay put for the time being.

"Celtic want big money - around €12m they are quoting at the moment - and nobody is biting at that price, and it does not look like anyone will," a source confirmed.

Most likely destination?

On paper Arsenal still looks a perfectly plausible destination for Van Dijk, with the Gunners woefully short of cover at centre-back for Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny.

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger courted a move for the Dutch destroyer last summer, but eventually decided to pass on the Bhoys standout as Thomas Vermaelen's replacement.

You have to feel that unless he's impressed Gunners scouts over the last six months Wenger will still feel the same, but the pressure is definitely on Arsenal's stubborn manager to strengthen their squad from a growing section of disappointed supporters.

Van Dijk may have to set his sights a little lower if he's serious about playing in the Premier League this season, with new West Brom boss Tony Pulis sending Baggies scouts to watch him against Kilmarnock on Monday night.

Sunderland are just ahead of Arsenal as bookies' favourites to sign him before the transfer window slams shut, but unless Celtic's asking price is met he'll still be in Glasgow after February 4th.


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