Football

Celtic: Van Dijk now a star after leaving


In recent years Celtic have had an unhealthy habit of seeing their best players walk through the Parkhead exit door.

It’s been a common trend for most managers with the likes of Fraser Forster, Victor Wanyama, Moussa Dembele and Kieran Tierney, to name a few, heading elsewhere in search of better wages and a more reputable division.

It’s a theme that could rear its ugly head once again this summer. Odsonne Edouard has repeatedly been linked with a move away while Kristoffer Ajer has also been touted with an exit.

It remains to be seen how much they’ll receive for their services but Edouard could leave the club for as little as £8m.

That would be disastrous business given his potential and goal scoring antics. Though, when it’s come to selling players we shouldn’t be overly surprised at this development.

The deal to sell Kieran Tierney for £25m is looking worse as the weeks go by. Only last week he was tipped to break the world-record fee for a defender if he leaves Arsenal.

Should Celtic have got more than £13m for VVD?

Definitely

No way

No way

Celtic have lost players like young Andy Robertson on a free transfer too but they also sold Virgil van Dijk.

The Dutchman is now playing alongside Robertson at Liverpool and has become one of the most impressive defenders in world football.

Sold for just £13m to Southampton in 2015, it’s fair to say the Saints got a better end of the deal.

Van Dijk impressed considerably on the south coast, so much so that Liverpool paid £75m for his services in 2018, bringing Southampton considerable profit.

Since then, he’s become an imperative piece of the jigsaw at Anfield. With the Dutchman at the back, Jurgen Klopp led Liverpool to Champions League and Premier League glory.

He is a pillar, a man mountain in defence. As of June 2020, he’d only been dribbled past eight times in three Premier League seasons.

His influence on this Liverpool side has been so colossal that without him due to injury this term, they sit in sixth place, 22 points off league leaders Manchester City.

In 2019, the defender’s value soared to £90m and in the process, he was named the second-best player in the world by FIFA. He was named the very best by UEFA in 2018/19 and he has now been included in two successive world XIs by football’s official governing body.

Because of his injury, van Dijk’s value has fallen slightly to £63m but he should still be classified among the very best.

Hailed by Carles Puyol as “the complete defender”, he is adored not only by his teammates but also football icons around the globe.

Speaking last season, his Liverpool teammate Joe Gomez commented: “When there’s a one-v-one battle you know he’s going to dominate; every header, he doesn’t really lose headers at all.

“He’s a real dominant force and a pleasure to play alongside.”

Van Dijk made 115 appearances for Celtic but little did they know that when he left, he would go on to become a world star.

He is an imperious rock, a £180k-per-week player that every attacker in world football has grown to fear. Losing him for just £13m six years ago can only be seen as a costly mistake.

Had they waited a few more years, a more significant sum of money may have come their way.

AND in other news, Big update emerges in Celtic manager hunt, it could be great news for fans…





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