Full details of Danny Ings’ Southampton loan revealed with Liverpool set to net £20m

The striker is returning to the south coast on an initial loan (Picture: Getty)Southampton have completed the signing of Liverpool striker Danny Ings on an initial loan, though the south-coast club will be required to make the deal permanent next summer.

The 26-year-old, who has struggled to make an impact at Anfield after a serious injury, moved back to the south coast on Thursday’s transfer deadline day – having begun his career at Bournemouth despite being a Saints fan as a kid.

Although the deal is initially a loan, the Liverpool Echo report that Southampton will be obliged to pay a minimum £18million on July 1, 2019.

The fee is variable though, and the Saints could be required to pay a further £2m in appearance-related add-ons, while Liverpool also have a 20% sell-on clause.

Speaking about the deal, Mark Hughes told Southampton’s website: ‘There was significant competition for Danny, with a lot of clubs keen to complete a deal for him, so we’re clearly delighted that he chose to join us.

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‘We have admired him for some time now, not only for his ability, but also his character and personality, which we feel will be an ideal fit in our dressing room.

‘He’s obviously a local boy, who gives us another excellent option up front.

Ings had been chased by a host of Premier League sides this summer (Picture: Getty)‘He didn’t get to play as much as he would have liked at Liverpool, but he has been injury-free for some time now and has a real point to prove.

‘It’s a great boost for us on the eve of the season to bring another quality player into the squad, and we’re excited about what he can bring to the group.’

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Liverpool and Arsenal in battle to sign Southampton goalkeeper Alex McCarthy

Alex McCarthy has enjoyed a fine season for Southampton (Picture: Getty)Liverpool and Arsenal are set for a battle to sign Alex McCarthy from Southampton this summer, according to the Daily Mirror.

Scouts from the Emirates and Anfield have watched McCarthy extensively this season as both clubs look to strengthen their goalkeeping options.

The Gunners are looking for a replacement for Petr Cech – the 35-year-old has endured a difficult season and is expected to end his Premier League career this summer.

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Jurgen Klopp is also on the look-out for a new goalkeeper with Simon Mignolet potentially heading for the exit door and Loris Karius often failing to impress.

McCarthy, who joined Southampton in 2016 in a £3.5million deal from Crystal Palace, started the current campaign in the Southampton reserves, playing back-up to Fraser Forster.

But he came back into the side over Christmas and kept Forster on the sidelines as Southampton narrowly avoided relegation to the Championship.

McCarthy signed from Crystal Palace two years ago (Picture: Getty)Newly-promoted Wolves are also interested in striking a deal for McCarthy.

Liverpool’s interest in McCarthy comes after the club were linked with a stunning move for Pepe Reina, the former Spain international who played almost 400 games for the Reds.

Reina, 35, is currently at Napoli but Liverpool chiefs are said to be keen to bring him back to Anfield to help a more inexperienced goalkeeper flourish.

Liverpool’s top target in goal is Alisson but Roma have slapped a whopping price-tag on the Brazilian’s head.

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Liverpool plotting transfer move for Mario Lemina after Arsenal drop interest

Mario Lemina is on Liverpool’s radar (Picture: Getty)Liverpool are interested in signing Southampton star Mario Lemina, according to reports in France.

Lemina completed a club-record £15.4million move to St Mary’s from Juventus last summer and the 24-year-old has managed one goal in 19 appearances for Mauricio Pellegrino’s side.

The Gabon international was heavily linked with Arsenal before joining the Saints but, according to L’Équipe, the Gunners have dropped their interest.

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However, it’s claimed Lemina is now firmly on Liverpool’s radar, with Jurgen Klopp plotting a move for the midfielder at the end of the 2017/18 campaign.

The Merseyside giants have already poached Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana, Nathaniel Clyne, Dejan Lovren, Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk from Southampton in recent seasons.

Jurgen Klopp is an admirer of Mario Lemina (Picture: Getty)Van Dijk became the most expensive defender of all-time when he sealed a £75million switch to Anfield in January.

Liverpool have already completed the signing of Naby Keita and the Guinean midfielder will officially join the club on July 1.

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Emre Can is expected to leave Liverpool for Juventus when his contract expires at the end of the season.

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MORE: Stan Collymore tells Jurgen Klopp to sign Gianluigi Buffon for Liverpool this summer

Andreas Christensen would keep Virgil van Dijk out of the Chelsea team, says Frank Lampard

Virgil van Dijk joined Liverpool last month in a world-record deal for a defender (Picture: Getty)Frank Lampard insists Andreas Christensen would still be in the Chelsea side even if Antonio Conte had spent a world-record sum on Virgil van Dijk.

Dutch defender Van Dijk was linked with a number of clubs last summer – including Chelsea – but he eventually joined Liverpool in January for £75million, a record fee for a defender.

Lampard was coming to the end of his career at Stamford Bridge when Christensen joined the club’s academy as a teenager. The Chelsea legend says he always knew Christensen had what it takes to develop into a key player for the Blues.

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Speaking to the Evening Standard, Lampard said: ‘Even if Van Dijk had come in, the player Christensen is, he’d have handled anything.

‘You put a team around those players even at his age. He wouldn’t have had a problem whoever they signed.

‘I trained with him a fair bit when I was still there. We were all very aware of his abilities. He came over to join in senior sessions when he was 16 and was very impressive.

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Andreas Christensen has developed into a key player for Antonio Conte (Picture: Getty)‘Some young players were not ready for the increase in speed of the game, to make decisions and choices on the ball when they were invited to join in.

‘But even at that young age you could see he had a composure and an awareness about him that made him fit straight in.’

After joining Chelsea’s academy at the age of 15, Christensen was sent on loan to Borussia Monchengladbach and spent two productive years at the German club.

He broke into the Chelsea first-team at the start of the current campaign and has not looked back since, replacing David Luiz as the club’s first-choice centre back.

Frank Lampard has heaped praise on the young defender (Picture: Getty)More: Football

‘Chelsea take a lot of criticism for loaning players out but Andreas is a perfect example of how it’s done right,’ former England midfielder Lampard added.

‘It is massively important for the academy and the young players to see Christensen in the first team now. He is a great example for everyone.

‘The young players can learn from his application. He has shown if you do things right, apply yourself, you will get your chance.’

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Pep Guardiola instructed Manchester City to prioritse Alexis Sanchez transfer over deal for Virgil van Dijk

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is keen to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal (Picture: Getty)Pep Guardiola instructed Manchester City to prioritise a deal for Alexis Sanchez over any possible move for new Liverpool signing Virgil van Dijk, according to reports.

Van Dijk completed a stunning £75million move to Anfield at the start of the month as Jurgen Klopp finally signed the Dutch defender in a deal that eclipsed the £53m City paid for Kyle Walker.

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The Reds were desperate to sign Van Dijk last summer but had to pull out of negotiations after being accused of ‘tapping-up’. Man City expressed interest in the 26-year-old at the time and were expected to revive their interest in January.

But Guardiola chose pursuing a deal for Arsenal forward Sanchez over strengthening his defensive options at the Etihad, according to The Sun.

Sanchez is expected to leave Arsenal either this month or next summer (Picture: Getty)The Gunners want £35m for Sanchez this month and City may yet decide to sign the Chilean on a free transfer when his contract expires at the end of the season.

Van Dijk enjoyed a ‘dream’ start to his career at Anfield after scoring the winner against rivals Everton in the third round of the FA Cup.

Virgil van Dijk joined Liverpool for a record-breaking £75m (Picture: Getty)More: Football

‘Playing at Anfield for Liverpool is a dream for every player – I think,’ he said. ‘That’s come true and scoring a goal is even more special.

‘What a night, fully deserved – obviously. It felt amazing to be out there, playing with these guys. The goal was very special for me and obviously for my family as well.’

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Jurgen Klopp speaks out on Philippe Coutinho future after record Virgil van Dijk transfer

Jurgen Klopp remained coy when asked about the future of Liverpool star Philippe Coutinho (Picture: Getty)Jurgen Klopp has dismissed suggestions Liverpool will be forced to sell Philippe Coutinho to balance the books after Virgil van Dijk’s £75million move to Anfield.

Netherlands international Van Dijk will complete his move from Southampton on Monday after Liverpool agreed to make him the most expensive defender in history.

The Reds attempted to sign the 26-year-old last summer and have finally secured his signature in a deal that eclipses the £53m Manchester City paid Tottenham for Kyle Walker.

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Asked if Van Dijk’s arrival would enhance the chances of Coutinho leaving, Klopp said: ‘Nobody told me that. I have no information about that. No.’

Barcelona had multiple bids for Coutinho rejected last summer and are expected to revive their interest in the Brazilian next month as they look for a long-term replacement for Neymar.

Virgil van Dijk will complete his move to Liverpool on Monday (Picture: Instagram)

Philippe Coutinho has emerged as a top target for Barcelona (Picture: Getty)Pressed on why he has refused to confirm Coutinho will not be leaving, German boss Klopp said: ‘There is nothing to say. The only thing I am interested in is how Phil is playing at the moment.

‘I was really happy about the last few performances and about his impact. He showed his character in the games and in the training sessions. That was spot on.

‘That is what I am interested in because all the rest I can’t, and don’t, want to talk about – because if I open the door then you run all the way through.’

Gary Neville questions Liverpool’s £75m transfer move for Virgil van Dijk

Virgil van Dijk has joined Liverpool from Southampton for £75million (Picture: Instagram)Gary Neville has questioned the ‘incredible’ £75million fee paid by Liverpool to sign Netherlands international Virgil van Dijk from Southampton.

Liverpool confirmed on Wednesday they had reached an agreement to make Van Dijk, who was also linked with Manchester City and Chelsea, the most expensive defender in history.

Former Manchester United and England star Neville insists Liverpool needed to bolster Jurgen Klopp’s defensive options but suggested they paid over the odds for Van Dijk.

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He told Sky Sports: ‘It’s a lot of money! When I first heard it I thought “wow, £75m”. I’m not surprised by the actual transfer but that is an incredible amount of money.

‘Liverpool need defenders and have to pay to get him. That’s the way the market is and it isn’t going to change.’

Liverpool were expected to sign Van Dijk last summer but were forced to abandon the chase after being accused of tapping-up offences.

Former Manchester United and England defender Gary Neville (Picture: Getty)But Klopp has finally secured his long-term target in a deal that eclipses the £53m paid by Manchester City for Kyle Walker.

‘It sounds like a fantastic deal for Southampton,’ Neville added. ‘But if Liverpool can stop their creaking in big matches when put under pressure then it will be a good deal for Liverpool as well.

‘People will forget about the money that has been spent in a year or two if they can win trophies and get the defence right.

‘Liverpool have to get the defence right, in the bigger matches they do stress quite quickly and can crack, so from their point of view, paying that sort of money hopefully it pays off, but for Southampton they would snap your hand off for £75m.’

Southampton eye move for Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge with Virgil van Dijk windfall

Daniel Sturridge is not a regular started for Liverpool (Getty)Southampton are weighing up a move for Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge during the January transfer window, according to reports.

Such a deal would be an intriguing one with Saints only in a position to consider such an option because Liverpool agreed to pay them £75million for centre-back Virgil van Dijk.

The deal for the Dutch defender was announced yesterday and will go through on 1 January.

Southampton are understood to be keen to quickly reinvest the money with a striker among their priorities.

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Virgil van Dijk with a Liverpool shirt (Picture: instagram)The Telegraph report that Sturridge is an option, with a loan deal being eyed, possibly turning into a permanent switch.

Sturridge could be open to the move with the striker in need of minutes with the World Cup taking place at the end of the season. His opportunities at Liverpool have been limited by recent fitness problems, but also the competition for places provided by Philippe Coutinho, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah.

Arsenal player Theo Walcott (Getty)

Luke Shaw (Getty)The report adds that Southampton are also interested in Theo Walcott and Luke Shaw, two other players who are struggling to get into their respective sides this season.

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A move for Fulham full-back Ryan Sessegnon is also being considered.

Southampton are desperate for improvements with fears growing the club could be pulled into a relegation scrap. They are currently two points above the relegation zone.

MORE: Jurgen Klopp urges Liverpool supporters to forget about Virgil van Dijk transfer fee

Virgil van Dijk sends message to new Liverpool team-mates after agreeing transfer

Liverpool have agreed a deal for Virgil van Dijk (Picture: Getty)Virgil van Dijk has released a statement after it was confirmed that Liverpool had reached an agreement for the defender.

The Merseyside giants have agreed a £75million deal with Southampton for Van Dijk and the 26-year-old centre-back admits he cannot wait to get started with his new team-mates.

Van Dijk was heavily linked with a move away from St Mary’s in the summer and Liverpool were forced to issue an official apology after an illegal approach for the Dutchman.

Official: Liverpool announce transfer deal for Virgil van Dijk

The Netherlands star used his statement to thank Southampton and their fans, posting: ‘Delighted and honoured to have agreed to become a Liverpool FC player!

‘Today is a proud day for me and my family as I join one of the biggest clubs in world football!

‘I can’t wait to pull on the famous red shirt for the first time in front of the Kop and will give everything I have to try and help this great club achieve something special in the years to come.

‘I would also like to take this opportunity to say thank you to Les Reed, the board, manager, players, fans and everyone at Southampton.

‘I will always be indebted to the club for giving me the opportunity to play in the Premier League and despite a difficult last few months I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Saints and have made friends for life at the club.’

Van Dijk admits he is looking forward to joining up with his new team-mates in training.

He continued: ‘Thank you for everything. Thank you for all the messages of support.

‘I’m now looking forward to meeting my new team-mates and getting started. #YNWA’

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Manchester City and Chelsea also held negotiations over a move for Van Dijk in recent weeks, but Liverpool beat their Premier League rivals to the signature.

It’s understood the ex-Celtic man will receive wages of around £180,000-a-week at Anfield.

Ex-Liverpool striker Stan Collymore labels Virgil van Dijk deal ‘absolute madness’

Virgil van Dijk will move on January 1 (Getty)The news that Virgil van Dijk will join Liverpool in January for £75million has been labelled as ‘absolute madness’ by Stan Collymore.

It was revealed today that Southampton have agreed a fee with Liverpool for the Dutch centre-back.

An official announcement from both clubs has been made with the deal to be concluded on January 1.

The fee for Van Dijk, who joined Southampton from Celtic in 2015 for £13million, will be a world record for a defender.

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Former Liverpool player Collymore is staggered at the fee.

‘Even the biggest clubs will be pricing themselves out of the market soon,’ he wrote on Twitter. ‘Absolute madness.’

£75m
Too much money burning too many big holes in too many pockets.
Even the biggest clubs will be pricing themselves out of the market soon.
Absolute madness.
— Stan Collymore (@StanCollymore) December 27, 2017

Former Manchester United player Gary Neville has also expressed his shock at the price tag.

‘It’s a lot of money isn’t it,’ he told Sky Sports. ‘I’ve not seen a lot of Southampton recently but I’m not sure he’s playing that well.

‘He’s a good defender. They’ll need to get him back to his best for that money.

‘I’m not surprised by the transfer but that’s an incredible amount of money.’

Virgil van Dijk with a Liverpool shirt (Picture: instagram)He added that ignoring the money, Van Dijk is an ideal addition to Liverpool’s squad: ‘Liverpool need defenders and that’s the way the market is.

‘When it comes to bigger matches they do stress quite easily and can crack.’

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Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher struck a more positive tone, noting that Van Dijk is better than he was in many departments.

Van Dijk’s first game is likely to be the FA Cup third round Merseyside derby with Everton.

MORE: Liverpool announce transfer deal for Virgil van Dijk