This article forms part of our Profit Players feature series, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at how well a player has fared since being signed or sold, using statistical figures and statements from pundits to prove how good of a deal the club managed to achieve.
Back in 2013, Celtic signed defender Virgil van Dijk for just £2.48 million from Eredivisie side FC Groningen, per Transfermarkt. The centre-back was virtually an unknown and some might have been worried by the club spending a decent chunk of money on him.
But seven years on and the Dutchman now has a Champions League medal to his name at Liverpool, and he was part of some great campaigns with Celtic. The money they made from selling him and the success he brought highlights how much of a profit player he was.
Virgil made 115 appearances for the club and was a lynchpin in defence, keeping 54 clean sheets in all competitions for the Hoops, per Transfermarkt. Added to that, standing at 6’3″, he was able to provide an attacking threat at set pieces as he managed to score 15 times.
Every season he played for the Hoops, (three), they won the Premiership, whilst he also won the Scottish League Cup whilst he was there. His dominating performances were highlighted by the fact he made the PFA Scotland Team of the Season twice.
He truly emphasises how great Celtic’s scouting network can be, as he was sold for £14.13m to Premier League side Southampton. Then when the Saints sold him for a world record fee for a defender at the time to Liverpool, £76.19m, the Hoops received a further £6m from the deal, per Transfermarkt, meaning that overall they made just less than £18m on him.
Now the Netherlands defender looks set to win the Premier League, whilst he is considered one of the best players in the world – he was in the top three for the Ballon d’Or awards last season and named UEFA’s best player in Europe last campaign.
Celtic introduced the football world to this star, he was signed for a bargain price and he brought them a lot of success and money. Both the club and supporters can be proud of watching the player become one of the best on the planet.
Hoops fans, how good was Virgil van Dijk at the Hoops? Comment below!
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