John Terry thinks Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk would get into the starting lineups of sides like Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Tottenham, but not Chelsea.
The Southampton centre-back has repeatedly been linked with other top clubs in the league, particularly Manchester City in recent weeks.
Those links led to Chelsea manager Antonio Conte calling on the other big-six clubs to challenge City for his signature.
John Terry has added his opinion on the matter, saying that van Dijk is good enough to make the step up to the top teams in the Premier League, but wouldn’t get in Chelsea’s first-team.
“If you look at Liverpool he certainly goes into the starting line-up. Arsenal the same. Chelsea he makes their squad better. Man City he goes into that starting XI. Same at Manchester United. I think he goes into all them squads and makes them better.
“I do think he’s victim of Southampton’s trouble at the minute. I think it was a big statement to put him on the bench for the game with Chelsea. If they are demanding £60million, if I were Chelsea I would be saying more like £55m if he’s not getting in their starting XI.”
If Terry is right, and van Dijk really would get into the starting eleven in most of the big-six teams, then I doubt Southampton benching the centre-back is going to do much to reduce his price.
A bidding war between the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City is already likely to jack the price up significantly before you even consider the rest.
Arsenal could be on the look out for a centre-back, with Per Mertesacker retiring at the end of the season, Nacho Monreal only just starting to play as a centre-back, and Shkodran Mustafi having already suffered two injuries this campaign, as well as asking to leave over the summer.
Calum Chambers and Rob Holding are also struggling to make the first-team in the league, so perhaps van Dijk could fill a gap. But I’ll believe Arsenal getting into a £55m bidding war when I see it.