Saturday, September 23, 2017

No hard feelings with Van Dijk at Southampton, says Bertrand

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 16 Sep 2017

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Southampton defender Ryan Bertrand insisted there are “no bad vibes” with team-mate Virgil van Dijk after the Dutchman failed to engineer a move away from the Premier League club.

Van Dijk handed in a transfer request to try and force a departure amid reported interest from Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City, but a switch did not materialise.

The 26-year-old centre-back – who has not featured for Southampton’s first team since January due to an ankle injury – is back in the fold following his outing for the reserves on Monday.

“It is nice to keep hold of players,” Bertrand told Sky Sports ahead of Saturday’s trip to lowly Crystal Palace.

“There were no bad vibes in the dressing room. Everyone is entitled to their opinions and what they want to do in their lives, but we just get on with it and play as a team.

“He has clearly stated that there are some big teams involved and wanted him and he just wanted to go on and pursue his career and move on to really big things.

“But he had a contract with Southampton and it did not happen. The club did not want to sell him and that is it, that is football.”

Southampton have won one of their opening four games to sit 13th in the table, five points better off than Palace.

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