Ex-Crystal Palace boss: Scout warned me not to sign Virgil van Dijk

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Neil Warnock has revealed that he was talked out of signing Virgil van Dijk for Crystal Palace by his chief scout.

READ MORE - Celtic sold Virgil van Dijk on the cheap says Chris Sutton

Virgil van Dijk scores the opening goal in the Scottish Cup semi-final match between Celtic and Inverness CT in April 2015. Picture: John Devlin

Virgil van Dijk scores the opening goal in the Scottish Cup semi-final match between Celtic and Inverness CT in April 2015. Picture: John Devlin

The current Cardiff City boss claimed that he had been keeping tabs on the Dutch defender before his £12 million move to Southampton, and asked his chief scout to go and run the rule over the Celtic centre back.

Van Dijk this week sealed a £75 million move to Liverpool, due to go through on 1 January next year.

In quotes posted on Twitter by Alan Brazil’s Sport Breakfast account, Warnock said: “When I was at Palace I went after a centre half at Celtic called van Dijk and they want £6 million, so I said ‘we’ve got to buy him don’t we?’

“But the chief scout went to see him and said ‘he’s not very quick; it’s Scottish football’. That was before Southampton came in for him.”

Van Dijk's Instagram post after agreeing to join Liverpool. Picture: PA

Van Dijk's Instagram post after agreeing to join Liverpool. Picture: PA

Celtic will benefit from van Dijk’s move to Anfield thanks to a sell-on clause; the Hoops will pocket around £7.5 million from the sale.

The sell-on clause will mean Celtic have raked in nearly £20 million for a player they initially signed for just £2.6 million from Groningen in 2013.

READ MORE - Celtic windfall from Liverpool’s record £75m Virgil van Dijk deal