Report: Southampton expected to make van Dijk bid, hope for agreement within 48 hours

Southampton are hoping to push through a deal for Celtic star Virgil van Dijk within 48 hours.

According to the Daily Mail, Southampton are ready to make their first bid for Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk - and hope to agree a deal in the next 48 hours.

The Saints have snapped up one centre back already this summer in Steven Caulker from QPR, but the departure of Toby Alderweireld to Tottenham Hotspur means Ronald Koeman is still on the lookout for one more defender - especially given the long-term injury to Romanian international Florin Gardos.

Now, the Daily Mail report that, after seeing Celtic crash out of the Champions League with a defeat to Malmo on Wednesday night, manager Koeman is set to lodge a bid for Bhoys star Virgil van Dijk.

The Dutchman, 24, joined Celtic from Groningen in 2013, and his impressive displays in Scotland have triggered plenty of interest, with Southampton now set to make their first move for the 6ft 4in centre back.

Even despite his tough outing against Malmo, it looks like Southampton are expected to lodge an £8m bid according to the Daily Mail, and they hope to reach an agreement for Van Dijk within the next 48 hours.

With strength, aerial ability, pace and the ability to bring the ball out from defence, Van Dijk has many of the attributes that could make him a Premier League star.

There are still some wrinkles in his game that Koeman will be looking to iron out should he complete that deal, whilst the presence of veteran defender Jose Fonte at St. Mary's Stadium should be ideal for Van Dijk, given how he helped nurture Alderweireld last season and Dejan Lovren the year before that.

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