Everton and Southampton are set to lock horns in the race to sign Celtic centre back Virgil Van Dijk, according to the Mirror.
With Everton close to losing John Stones to Chelsea and Southampton looking for alternatives to Toby Alderweireld, who turned down the chances to sign permanently for the Saints in favour of a move to Tottenham, the two Premier League sides are looking for a centre-back to strengthen their defence.
And Van Dijk appears to be the man to fill their respective voids, with the Dutchman standing at an intimidating 1.93m tall and having scored ten goals in all competitions for Celtic last season.
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Southampton have reportedly launched an £8 million bid for the powerful defender but Everton are now looking to sign him following Chelsea's interest for Stones.
The Toffees announced earlier this week that Stones would be allowed to leave for no less than £34 million and with Chelsea quite likely to match that value, Everton are looking into a replacement for the young English starlet.
For Southampton, on the other hand, their loss of Alderweireld, alongside the long-term injury of Florian Gardos', would make signing Van Dijk the perfect deal in terms of value for money, while the attraction of playing for countryman Ronald Koeman might play a part in his decision.
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