Are Liverpool At It Again?
Tuesday, 20th Jun 2017 13:36
After a very public climb down and apology it seems Liverpool are back briefing the press about their interest in Virgil Van Dijk.
Liverpool climbed down pretty swiftly when Saints reported them to the Premier League about an illegal approach for Virgil Van Dijk, whilst it is common knowledge that clubs speak to players regarding their interest in a possible transfer long before they contact the club, Liverpool made the mistake of getting caught, or more to the point they virtually handed themselves in to the authorities by briefing trusted members of the press that the deal was in the bag.
This was a major own goal and one that could have cost the Anfield club dearly given their recent history of illegal tapping up of players even before the Van Dijk saga.
But now it seems that after waiting a few weeks for it all to calm down, Liverpool are already briefing the press that the deal for Van Dijk may not be dead and I am sure that this will not please Saints.
Headlines like "Liverpool to ask if Saints Van Dijk stance has softened" "Virgil Van Dijk saga not over" and "Liverpool could still sign Virgil Van Dijk" all stories which have suddenly started to appear in the press over the last day, that seem to be a concerted campaign by Liverpool to unsettle the player.
The tactic seems to be very much the same as last time, a few well placed leaks to trusted journalists who put up stories, those stories are then taken up not just by other news outlets keen to be seen to have their fingers on the pulse, but fans sites and social media, all meaning that it will once again look like Van Dijk wants to go and indeed to try and stir the player up into digging his heels in and demanding a move.
Of course Liverpool will hold up their hands and feign innocence but it seems they haven't learn't their lesson. They will say they no nothing of this information, but if they don't know then who does ? certainly not Saints who would not be trying to force their own player out of the door and doing Liverpool's dirty work for them.
Last time someone in their PR department seemed to think that it would help persuade Saints to sell Van Dijk if they put it in the press that he wanted to go to Anfield, but it had the opposite affect, it backed Saints into a corner where they had to make a stand and it backfired on Liverpool who if they had kept quiet could possibly have twisted Saints arm into selling at a hefty price.
Now that hefty price has gone up and the latest headlines are only likely to make it go up even more, but more to the point it means that Saints will dig their heels in even harder a decision that might cost Liverpool dearly come next May, Virgil Van Dijk is the best central defender in the Premier League, he would have made the difference between Liverpool winning their first title in nearly 30 years or being also rans.
Photo: Action Images
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