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WARNING: this article contains words that may offend some readers

THE ONE thing you could never accuse Liverpool legend (so we are told) John Aldridge of is hypocrisy or double-standards. Well, actually, that is exactly the accusation...

Aldridge suggested Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk should go on strike to force a move to Liverpool. The same Liverpool who earlier this month, in the wake of tapping-up allegations, said: "Liverpool Football Club would like to put on record our regret over recent media speculation regarding Southampton Football Club and player transfers between the two clubs.
"We apologise to the owner, board of directors and fans of Southampton for any misunderstanding regarding Virgil van Dijk. We respect Southampton's position and can confirm we have ended any interest in the player."

Maybe Aldridge was away when that happened and was unaware but today he said: “Players and their agents hold all the power these days and if he says he won’t kick another ball for Southampton and demands a move, it will happen.

“Van Dijk needs to make the next move and I reckon he will tell Southampton that he wants out and he wants to go to Liverpool. Players can hold clubs to ransom if they want a move and big money offers are coming in.”

However, strangely, Aldridge had a rather different view when Raheem Sterling wanted to quit Liverpool two years ago before eventually joining Manchester City.

Then, Aldridge said: “It’s not been pleasant from Liverpool’s point of view and from a fan’s point of view. He’s a young and naïve lad, obviously he listens to an awful lot of what his agent says and does, and he’s got a lot of confidence in his agent. It’s been dealt in a really unprofessional manner over the last few months but the agent has got what he wanted.”

So if a player wants to leave Liverpool it's naïve and unprofessional, but if he wants to join Liverpool it's OK to go on strike.

That's cleared that up then. Thanks legend.