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Two clubs battling to sign Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk?

Two clubs battling to sign Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk?
© Reuters
Two clubs, including a Champions League semi-finalist, reportedly prepare to battle one another for the signature of Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk this summer.

Two clubs, including a Champions League semi-finalist, are reportedly preparing to battle one another for the signature of Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk this summer.

The Netherlands international was promoted to club captain last year following the departures of Jordan Henderson and James Milner and has shown signs of his best form in the 2023-24 campaign.

Proudly sporting the armband, Van Dijk has scored four goals and set up two more in 45 matches for the Reds, including the winner in his side's dramatic EFL Cup final triumph over Chelsea.

However, just a few months on from thoughts of a quadruple, Liverpool's season - and Jurgen Klopp's reign - is ending with a whimper, as the Merseyside giants have been knocked out of both the Europa League and FA Cup.

In addition, a run of just one win from five Premier League matches leaves the Reds five points behind Arsenal at the top of the table, a gap which will increase to seven if Manchester City win their match in hand.

Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk pictured on March 10, 2024© Reuters

Bayern Munich, Saudi Arabia battling for Van Dijk

Amid significant changes upstairs with the arrival of a new head coach (Arne Slot) and sporting director (Richard Hughes), a reshuffle in playing personnel could also occur before the 2024-25 campaign.

Van Dijk is one of a few star men facing an uncertain future, as his contract only runs until the end of next season, meaning that Liverpool could be tempted to entertain offers this summer before they run the risk of losing him for nothing in 2025.

According to Sports Zone, the former Southampton and Celtic man is on the radar of German giants Bayern Munich, as well as Al-Qadisiah, who operate in the second tier of Saudi Arabian football.

Al-Qadisiah - who are owned by the Saudi Arabian Oil Group - are on course for promotion to the Saudi Pro League, and the outlet adds that they have already tabled a lucrative offer to the 32-year-old.

Bayern's interest is not as advanced, though, and Van Dijk is supposedly planning to stay at Anfield for the rebuild under Slot next season, but his Merseyside future is not set in stone.

Liverpool facing major defensive rejig this summer

After the shock news of Klopp's resignation broke, Van Dijk initially appeared to cast doubt on his future at Liverpool beyond the end of the season, although he quickly clarified those remarks and insisted he remains completely committed to the club.

The Dutchman's contract situation will still be a pressing matter for new sporting director Hughes, but Liverpool cannot afford to lose their stalwart skipper at a time when another four centre-backs could be heading elsewhere.

ACL victim Joel Matip, who has likely played his final game for the club, is expected to leave when his deal runs out at the end of June, while Nat Phillips, Rhys Williams and Sepp van den Berg could follow suit.

Bayern have also been linked with a move for left-back Andrew Robertson as a potential replacement to Alphonso Davies, expected to move to Real Madrid, who are also monitoring Trent Alexander-Arnold's situation.

While Alexander-Arnold's deal also expires in 2025, the Reds are not thought to be overly concerned with the prospect of their star full-backs leaving, but it is a different story in the heart of defence.

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp pictured on April 18, 2024
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