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Nigel Adkins: Virgil van Dijk needs to show Southampton respect

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What a legend Nigel Adkins is — real talk.

Norwich City v Southampton - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images

Former Southampton boss Nigel Adkins has stepped up and said that Virgil van Dijk needs to show his club respect amid continue interest from Liverpool.

Van Dijk, who did not travel to France with the rest of the club, has been training alone after reportedly telling the club his wishes to leave.

Southampton, however, is in no position to sell the Dutchman who signed a six-year contract last summer.

“He needs to be respectful of Southampton — he needs to be training and training well for them,” said Adkins, who guided Saints to back-to-back promotions. “If something does materialise, then that’s just business, that’s football, that’s life. He’s got to deal with that.”

Liverpool remain invested in pursuing van Dijk whilst reports suggest Chelsea could swoop in for the defender with Antonio Conte looking to add to his squad.

“We've got a situation in football where it's too easy for a player to say ‘I am unhappy’… well the player was not unhappy when he signed a contract not so long ago,” he said. “If Van Dijk does go, Southampton will get the asking price, which seems very expensive at this point in time."

But until then, or any such bid is accepted, Adkins believes Southampton must hold firm against their prized asset.