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Southampton insist Virgil van Dijk not for sale in January transfer window

Southampton will not sell Virgil van Dijk in the winter transfer window despite reported interest from Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City.

Van Dijk, 25, joined Saints from Celtic for £13 million in the summer of 2015 and had been linked with a £50m move away, with Everton also reported to be tracking him.

Club captain Jose Fonte is set to move on this month after handing in a transfer request, but Netherlands international Van Dijk will not be allowed to follow him through the exit door.

"Virgil is not for the sale," Saints executive director Les Reed told the Southampton Daily Echo. "We haven't had any bids and if we got any bids we wouldn't consider them because it just doesn't make sense to think we would release Virgil van Dijk in midseason when we have still got, we believe, all to play for.

"There haven't been any enquiries but certainly the status of him at the moment is that he is simply not for sale."

Reed insisted the club would not pay over the odds for reinforcements in the January window, though he did not rule out bringing in new faces.

He added: "We know what we would like to do to improve this squad, both for now and from now on for the next few years, but it's always a question of availability, and availability at the right price, and whether the player would come to the club.

"If we do anything we will do our business quietly, under the radar, as we did with Charlie [Austin] last year. That's our method, that's our model, it hasn't changed and it's not going to change."