Southampton boss Pellegrino urges fans not to jeer Van Dijk

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Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino has urged fans not to boo Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk on Sunday.

Van Dijk wanted to quit Saints in the summer but was forced to stay after the club refused to sell.

He sat out the start of the season, returned to the team below his best and finally arrived at Anfield five weeks ago in a £75m deal.

Pellegrino said: “I think we have to be grateful with him and now we have to think that Virgil is part of the past.

“He did well in our club and he left some profit to the club and we have to grateful.

“But Virgil is part of the past and we have to focus on our game and what we have to do.

“One group of people can be grateful for him and one people can say ‘boo’, but it’s not about this.

“Every single person has got an opinion and we have to respect that.

“I think our fans are really respectful with ex-players and I prefer that our fans are focused on supporting our players and get behind us.

“Our players must be focused and give to our supporters with good feeling, attitude and energy to try to be 100 per cent on the pitch.”

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