The baffling reason why Crystal Palace passed on signing Virgil van Dijk for £6m in 2014 | inside World Soccer

The baffling reason why Crystal Palace passed on signing Virgil van Dijk for £6m in 2014

Friday, December 29, 2017

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Former Crystal Palace manager Neil Warnock has revealed the club could have landed Virgil van Dijk for a paltry £6 million in 2014, only to be turned off the pursuit by a chief scout.

The 26-year-old will complete his £75 million move to Liverpool once the January transfer window opens, bringing an end to a two-and-a-half season spell at Southampton.

It completes a remarkable rise for the Dutch defender since his breakthrough as a striker for Groningen.

After his defensive talents were spotted and he was shifted to the back, his journey has taken him to Glasgow Celtic in Scotland and the South Coast of England before his upcoming switch to Merseyside.

However, things could have been very different for van Dijk had Warnock, now in charge of Cardiff City, decided not against signing the Dutchman after a chief scout wrote him off.

Warnock, who had two spells in charge of Palace between 2007 to 2010 and in 2014, told talkSPORT:

When I was at Palace, it was difficult to sign players. I went after the centre-half at Celtic, van Dijk, and they wanted £6 million. I said "we have got to buy him, don't we?"

The chief scout went to watch him and said "he is not very quick, it's Scottish football". That was before Southampton came in for him.

I hope he's watching this morning that chief scout, £75 million!

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