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Van Dijk signs new six-year Southampton deal

Virgil van Dijk has signed a new six-year contract with Southampton.

The Netherlands international moved to St Mary's Stadium from Celtic on a five-year deal last September and has been handed fresh terms following an impressive debut season.

Van Dijk has made 36 appearances in all competitions and has committed to the club until 2022.

Southampton are in the hunt for European football and Van Dijk is excited about the future.

"I'm so pleased, I'm so happy. Me and my family have enjoyed it a lot this year.  It's been amazing. It's only positive," he told Southampton's YouTube channel.

"The club is growing and I definitely want to grow with them, that's how I feel. Hopefully we can make it happen. That's the plan, to get a lot of achievements going."

Executive director of football Les Reed added: "In his first year with the club, Virgil has quickly established himself as one of the top centre-backs in the Premier League, becoming an integral part of what has been another strong season for the team. 

"At 24, and with significant European experience already under his belt, we believe he can be a key pillar in our squad for years to come, and we are delighted to have agreed this new deal with him. 

"Although Virgil only joined us in September we felt it was important to strengthen our commitment and we believe this also provides further indication of how serious our ambitions are for the coming years."

The news will be a boost for boss Ronald Koeman, who spoke during the week about his desire to retain key players heading into next season.