Former Chelsea striker Tony Cascarino says Manchester United are keen on completing Virgil van Dijk's transfer as the Southampton star could be a "perfect fit" for Jose Mourinho. The centre-back has been a key player in the Saints back four this season as they hold the third best defensive record in the Premier League.

The Dutch international's form for Southampton has seen him attract interest from the top clubs in the country. An earlier report in The Times suggested that Antonio Conte wanted to rival United in securing the defender's signature in the January transfer window.

In addition to this, Pep Guardiola is also in the race to sign Van Dijk for Manchester City. The Telegraph claims Southampton have slapped a £60m ($73.7m) asking price to part ways with their star player.

Cascarino remains confident that Van Dijk can fit into any system and has backed him to succeed at United, Chelsea or City, if he decides to leave Southampton for either of these clubs.

"A lot of people, including me, felt that Van Dijk was the finished article at Celtic and ready to go to a big club in England, but those big clubs often let a player move to a smaller Premier League team, who they see as a kind of "feeder" club, for something like £10 million to make sure he can settle," Cascarino told The Times.

"If he does so, then they will say: "Right, let's buy him for £40 million to £50 million". Van Dijk has certainly passed that test, and I can see Chelsea and the Manchester clubs lead the queue for him. He is versatile enough to slip into a three-man central defence so Chelsea's system would not be a problem.

"City need to overhaul almost their whole defence, so they would welcome him, perhaps as a partner for Stones, who may be the only defender to survive Pep Guardiola's cull when it comes.

"But I feel United might be the keenest to acquire him, with José Mourinho deeming him a perfect fit. He could form an effective partnership with any one of Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Eric Bailly or Marcos Rojo. Whichever club signs him will be getting a machine who can help to sustain a title challenge."

Virgil van Dijk
Virgil van Dijk is reportedly attracting interest from Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City Getty