Yesterday, amidst Tony Cascarino talking through his backside and Scotland’s stand in boss trying to find virtue in selecting Ryan Jack, no matter how preposterous, Virgil Van Dijk spoke to the media about his ambitions in the game, and his hope that he can crack the Dutch international side and stay there.
Of course he will, there was never any doubt.
Van Dijk is a cracking player, and he was always going to be a cracking player.
But he was a player who could not wait to get out of Celtic Park. He said, during the interview, that he always keeps an eye out for our results; that’s nice to read, but ultimately of no consequence at all. He made the decision to leave us in pursuit of money; if he had possessed the right level of ambition Southampton would not have been his destination.
I generally pay no heed to what happens to a player when he leaves Celtic, especially when said player left before giving us more than a few months; it’s a disservice to our club that some see it as a mere stepping stone to “bigger and better” things.
Was Southampton really a step up for Virgil?
He knows it wasn’t, which is why he has agitated for a move. That move is of more interest to me than his expressions of affection.
Virgil will net us a nice fat fee when he finally gets his next transfer … and I hope that we get it in January. Because that will allow Brendan more latitude to bring in someone good for our own central defensive position. That’s what matters to me here.
If Virgil hadn’t been in such a hurry to leave the club he left us for he might have kept his gob shut about the Liverpool negotiations. He would be at Anfield right now. If he keeps his head and shows the appropriate respect to his current employers they might not be so inclined to stand in the way of heading off to new ones.
Virgil has one last service to perform to Celtic.
He can show us the money.