Ex-Arsenal and Celtic striker John Hartson speaks highly of Virgil van Dijk

Celtic U-20s

Former Arsenal and Celtic star John Hartson rates Virgil van Dijk very highly.

John Hartson has been singing the praises of Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk on ITV.com.

Van Dijk is one of the best players in the Celtic squad and one of the best centre-backs in the Scottish Premiership.

The 23-year-old’s impressive performances for the Bhoys since 2013 have often led to speculation that he would leave for a Premier League club, with The Daily Mail reporting of Arsenal’s interest in the January transfer window.

Former Celtic and Arsenal striker Hartson believes that Van Dijk is a quality centre-back, and backs him to be a success in the Premier League if he does move.

“We've seen a lot of players leave Celtic but end up with clubs at the bottom end of the Premiership,” ITV.com quotes the 39-year-old as saying.

“Now the question is, would a club like Manchester City trust him to be playing in big games domestically and in the Champions League every week?

“Or is he someone who is more suited to being at a club like Swansea, Newcastle or West Ham, where you are playing in that middle half of the table?

“Is he top notch? Is he as good as the Laurent Koscielnys of this world? I think he is. I think he is a top-six Premier League player. I really do.”

Van Dijk has shown in Scotland how good he is, but he has yet to truly do it in Europe (Champions League/Europa League).

The Premier League is of a much higher level than the Scottish Premiership, and it would be a gamble for a top team in England to sign the defender.

Van Dijk has not been capped by the Netherlands national team, and he is already 23 years of age.

However, one won’t be able to know for sure until and unless Van Dijk plays in the Premier League.

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