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 By PA Sport

Virgil van Dijk uncertain on Celtic future amid Southampton links

Reported Southampton target Virgil van Dijk admitted uncertainty about his Celtic future after the Scottish club's Champions League failure.

Van Dijk has been heavily linked with a move to Southampton, although the Hoops denied reports that a deal was in place before their 2-0 defeat by Malmo in Sweden, which consigned them to a second consecutive season in the Europa League.

The former FC Groningen defender, who is in his third season of a four-year deal, has now said he is open to offers ahead of Tuesday's transfer window.

When asked if he was on his way out of Glasgow following the 4-3 aggregate defeat, the 24-year-old said: "It's a terrible way if it ends like this but I don't know what's going to happen. I'm not looking for anything.

"It's a great place to be and they gave me an opportunity to show myself, so I'm very thankful for that, but if the right opportunity comes and it's the right opportunity for me then I'll consider it, but I think that's what any player would do."

When quizzed about Southampton's interest, Van Dijk said: "I can't say anything. I think you need to ask the board.

"I don't know what will happen in the coming days. Celtic is an amazing club and I'm very thankful for everything they have done for me."

When asked for a message to Celtic fans who want to know about his future, he said: "First of all, apologies from the whole team to all of them, especially the ones that travelled, but I can't say anything.

"It's the board and eventually the other club that needs to come to an agreement.

"I've not been talking to anyone because I have been focusing on the game. Now the qualification is over and I don't know what's going to happen."

Van Dijk insisted the transfer speculation had not affected him after Celtic blew a two-goal lead by conceding three goals from corners over the two legs.

"I was more than 100 percent focused," he said. "Everyone was firing each other up before the game but a game doesn't always go how you expect. We were poor and we need to do better.

"After the first goal they got the power and the belief to go for it. We had trouble keeping the ball, which we are normally good at. Simple things went wrong.

"I'm very disappointed. I'm a winner. I want to win every game I play, but it wasn't a good performance from the whole team. It will be terrible if it ends like this but I have a lot of great memories from the club."

Celtic reiterated on Wednesday that there was no deal in place for Van Dijk to leave.

A club spokesperson said: "We have had a number of enquiries in relation to Virgil; however, we have no agreement with any club. As we have said before, we do not want Virgil to leave Celtic."


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