Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk has reportedly chosen a move to Liverpool ahead of Manchester City and Chelsea, according to a number of sources including the Times and the Guardian.
The Dutch centre-back, who spent the majority of the second half of this season injured, has been the subject of a number of high-profile suitors.
Van Dijk’s profile has risen exponentially since he moved to the south coast from Celtic two years ago.
Southampton snapped him up for £13m then but could recoup as much as £60m this summer – a world-record fee for a defender.
But while Van Dijk, after a number of calls with Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, has indicated he wants to leave the Saints are adamant they want to keep hold of their prized asset.
Should the clubs reach an agreement for the 25-year-old, he would become the sixth Southampton player to make the move to Anfield in the last three years after Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert, Dejan Lovren, Nathaniel Clyne and Sadio Mane.
He is also expected to become the club’s highest paid player on £200k-a-week if a deal does materialise.
Van Dijk is widely regarded as one of the finest players in his position in the Premier League and was also linked with Barcelona in January.
It certainly seems Liverpool have won the race – but there’s still a long way to go in this saga before anything is formalised.