Van Dijk agrees six-year deal with Saints

Southampton have pulled off a major coup after confirming defender Virgil van Dijk has agreed to sign a new six-year deal with the club.

The Netherlands international joined the English Premier League outfit last summer and his displays for Ronald Koeman’s side this season has reportedly attracted the interest of Europe’s elite as Manchester United and Chelsea being particular admirers of the former Glasgow Celtic defender.

“The club is growing and I definitely want to grow with them, that’s how I feel. Hopefully we can make it happen,” Van Dijk told the club’s official website.

In a largely successful campaign for the Saints van Dijk has been a ever present figure alongside club captain Jose Fonte making 36 appearances this season as they trial 5th placed Manchester United by only three points and Executive Director of Football Les Reed concedes the defender can be the backbone of the club for foreseeable future.

“In his first year with the club, Virgil has quickly established himself as one of the top centre-backs in the Premier League, becoming an integral part of what has been another strong season for the team,” Reed said.

“At 24, and with significant European experience already under his belt, we believe he can be a key pillar in our squad for years to come, and we are delighted to have agreed this new deal with him.

“Although Virgil only joined us in September we felt it was important to strengthen our commitment and we believe this also provides further indication of how serious our ambitions are for the coming years.”