Virgil van Dijk
Virgil van Dijk is now back in the Southampton starting XI after ugly summer transfer saga GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images

Virgil van Dijk insists he is now happy at Southampton after being reintegrated back into the team following a protracted transfer saga, although appears fairly non-committal on his future amid sustained interest from Liverpool.

The Dutch international was widely expected to leave St Mary's over the summer after being sidelined by a long-term foot injury, although Liverpool botched their initial pursuit and issued an apology for "any misunderstanding" amid reports that they were about to be reported to the Premier League over an alleged illegal approach.

Chelsea and Manchester City were also said to be chasing the ambitious Van Dijk, who was ordered to train alone over the summer and eventually went public with a transfer request after being fined two weeks' wages.

He also stated that he had made his desire to leave Southampton clear over the previous six months and implored the club to consider the interest in him from high-profile suitors "should it still exist".

However, the Saints remained resolute in their desire not to sell and the transfer deadline came and went without any agreement.

Manager Mauricio Pellegrino then began the tricky process of reintroducing Van Dijk back into the first-team squad, initially deploying the former Groningen and Celtic defender as a substitute before starting him in each of the last five top-flight matches.

Van Dijk, who only put pen to paper on a new six-year contract in May 2016, now seems content again after such an ugly episode, although it remains to be seen if Liverpool or indeed any other suitor will look to retest Southampton's resolve during the January window.

It was suggested last month that Barcelona were also monitoring the 26-year-old and weighing up a bid of around £50m ($65.6m).

"I don't think it's appropriate to comment on anything that happened before," Van Dijk told the Daily Echo. "I'm giving 100 per cent for the club, I work hard every day, I help my team-mates and I'm positive and I want to win every game. That's the situation right now.

"I think that's pretty clear [that he has moved on from what happened over the summer]. I've been playing, you can judge for yourself. I feel good."

He added: "I'm happy and that's the most important thing. We'll see what happens. I'm just getting back to pace and I feel like I've been growing every game. You know, coming back from an eight month injury is not easy but I'm feeling better every week."