Virgil Van Dijk could miss rest of the season
Southampton captain Virgil van Dijk could be sidelined for the remainder of the campaign with an ankle injury sustained earlier in the year, manager Claude Puel has confirmed.
The 25-year-old suffered the gruelling injury in the 3-0 win over Leicester City in January, and this cost him a place in the EFL Cup final where the Saints lost out to Manchester United by a 3-2 scoreline.
Van Dijk gave some hope of a potential return after uploading a clip on Instagram where he was running on a treadmill, but Puel has admitted that the centre-back may not be fit enough to take part in the final stages of the season.
He also described the injury as 'long' as the player would not be rushed back with Maya Yoshida and Jack Stephens doing a fairly good job in the backline.
"It's a long injury," Puel told reporters in his press conference yesterday,"We will see if he comes back before the end of the season."
The news could come as a bitter blow for the club's faithful as Van Dijk may have played his final game at the South Coast with Chelsea and Manchester City likely to step up their interest in his signature this summer.