The former England international considers the Southampton centre-back to be the Premier League’s best at present, and sees him moving on in the near future
Virgil van Dijk is starting to generate plenty of transfer talk ahead of the January window, and former Arsenal defender Martin Keown expects him to be “snapped up soon”.
Having impressed for Southampton since being lured away from Celtic in September 2015, the Netherlands international is a wanted man.
‘Van Dijk could make Liverpool champions’
Manchester United and Liverpool are both said to be keeping a close eye on his situation at St Mary’s, with Jose Mourinho and Jurgen Klopp in the market for defensive additions.
Keown believes Van Dijk could well be on the move in the near future, with the 25-year-old having shown himself to be deserving of a grand stage.
He wrote in his column for the Daily Mail: “Virgil van Dijk has impressed me recently.
RUMOURS: Man Utd want Van Dijk
“I liked to play with a big central defender. I was good in the air but not the biggest, so I liked having the comfort of a mobile but big player alongside me such as Sol Campbell.
“I like the look of Van Dijk – I’m sure he’ll be snapped up soon.”
Keown was discussing his pick of the Premier League’s top defenders, and also singled out one of those on the books at Emirates Stadium for praise, admitting that he would have welcomed the opportunity to compete alongside such a classy operator.
He added: “If I could roll back the years it would mean a lot to have played with Laurent Koscielny.
“I would have really enjoyed playing with him – he’s a thoroughbred. He plays on the left, I played on the right, so let’s do it!”
RUMOURS: Koscielny to pen new deal
Van Dijk and Koscielny have been mainstays in their respective sides this season, both in domestic and European competition.
The latter is said to be close to agreeing an extension to his contract that he will keep him in north London for the foreseeable future, while the former committed to fresh terms at the end of last season and is tied to the Saints until 2022.