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Virgil van Dijk hands in transfer request, per reports

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Less than one week before the start of the Premier League season, Big Virg has done it.

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

Reports suggest that Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk has handed in his transfer request amid continue interest from the Premier League’s top clubs.

“It is with regret that I can confirm that I have today handed in a transfer request to leave Southampton Football Club,” van Dijk said in a statement.

“Over the past six months I have held numerous discussions with representatives of the board, the former manager Claude Puel as well as the new manager Mauricio Pellegrino to inform them all of my desire to leave the club in search of a new challenge.

Van Dijk’s transfer request, meanwhile, comes just 15 months after he signed a six-year deal with Southampton.

The defender has not been training with the first-team squad and missed pre-season trips to Switzerland to and France. He’s not featured for Southampton since sustaining an injury in January.

“I have been left frustrated by the club’s position that I am not for sale and am disappointed that enquires from multiple top clubs have been consistently rebuffed,” he added.

“I would also like to make it clear that I have never once refused to train. I can confirm that I was about my frame of mind and for all of the reasons mentioned above I was open and honest in saying that I did not feel I was in a settled mindset given the circumstances.”

Liverpool likely remain at the front of the queue, despite Jurgen Klopp saying they were no longer interested. Chelsea have also circled in recent weeks with Antonio Conte looking to add to his squad ahead of a busy schedule.