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Virgil van Dijk transfer to Liverpool 'created earthquake' - Saints chief

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Southampton chairman Ralph Krueger says he was relieved to see the Virgil van Dijk transfer saga end and believes the club's not-for-sale stance in the summer created an "earthquake."

Van Dijk became a Liverpool player on Jan. 1 following his £75 million move from Southampton, who finally agreed to sell him after standing firm in the summer.

Liverpool had looked the sign the Dutch centre-half before the season began, but were forced to apologise to the Saints amid tapping-up allegations, with the player then going on to hand a transfer request in attempt to force a move.

"Emotionally, it threw us off balance and financially it was a huge business risk," Kruger told BBC Radio Solent. "To make a stand and principle like that creates an earthquake.

"In no way shape or form am I angry at any one individual for what has happened here in the past months. It was under the shadow of a stand and principle. That chapter closes now.

"The cloud was there, we allowed a certain negativity into our very fragile environment, which is based on positivity, creativity, unity and looking at solutions. I believe we can truly get back to that now."

Meanwhile, fellow Liverpool defender Ragnar Klavan has welcomed the increased competition Van Dijk's arrival brings.

Klavan, who joined Liverpool in a £4.2m deal July 2016, says he is not disheartened by the big-money signing who plays in his position.

"He is a good addition to our team," Klavan said. "It is like it is for everyone: there is competition and competition is good for all places"

Glenn is ESPN FC's Liverpool correspondent. You can follow him on Twitter: @GlennPrice94.


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