Virgil van Dijk was in London yesterday. This we know because some geezer on Instagram posted a photo of him with the word “LONDON” written across it in massive red letters.
Under normal circumstances, this would not be noteworthy. The capital is about a two-hour drive from Van Dijk’s house and is a far more interesting place than Southampton, or even nearby Bournemouth.
He might have been in town to go shopping on Oxford Street, or see some ancient Egyptian exhibits at the British Museum, or watch a performance of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats. Or maybe there’s a glamour model in London that he sometimes sleeps with, or maybe there are five glamour models.
But these, alas, are not normal circumstances. These are the circumstances of the summer transfer window, and this means the Dutchman’s visit to the bustling metropolis almost certainly means he is about to sign for Chelsea.
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The Mirror reports that social media was set ablaze by the London snap, posted by a dude called Philip with 1,804 followers, and that Philip’s subsequent deletion of the Instagram story containing the pic is further proof that the centre-back is Stamford Bridge bound.
In another peculiar non-story, the Sun “exclusively” reveals that Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy will not sell star midfielder Dele Alli to Barcelona or Manchester City even if the club receive an offer of £150m.
There are no quotes in the story, nor any particular suggestion that Barcelona or Man City are set to imminently bid for Alli. But it’s nice of them to clear it up for us anyway.
Blues bids rejected
Alli may not be impressed, however, by the Mail’s claim that Spurs have been “outbid” by Lyon for Celta Vigo’s 20-year-old Senegalese midfielder Pape Cheikh Diop. He only costs about £10m.
Meanwhile the transfer story that no one saw coming, Man City’s pursuit of West Brom centre-back Jonny Evans, is set to continue with Pep Guardiola making an improved second bid for the Northern Irishman after seeing his initial £18m offer rejected (Mirror).
Chelsea are still trying to buy lots of players (in addition to Van Dijk), with the Star claiming the Blues have had a new £73m bid for Juventus full-back Alex Sandro rejected and the Mail reporting that Leicester have demanded £40m for Danny Drinkwater after the champions bid £25m.
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Meanwhile, Arsenal have simultaneously rejected a £45m bid from Man City for Alexis Sanchez and received a £60m bid from Man City for Alexis Sanchez, depending on whether you read the Express or the Star. If you’re sensible, you’ll read neither.
Elsewhere, Napoli have turned down a £55m bid from Barcelona for alleged Blues target Lorenzo Insigne (IB Times), Watford are close to agreeing a season-long loan deal for Benfica’s Peru international winger Andre Carrillo (Mirror) and Leeds striker Chris Wood is worried the £20m valuation the club has put on his head could ruin his chances of earning a “dream move” to Burnley (Star). Because growing up in New Zealand he always dreamed of one day playing at Turf Moor.