As transfer deadline day looms, football becomes a game of detective work and this year it seems Liverpool fans have adopted the role of Sherlock Holmes.
The Reds have had a relatively slow summer transfer window up until the past few days, when long-term target Naby Keita was confirmed to be joining them next year, and a big money offer was tabled for Monaco’s Thomas Lemar.
This late flurry of activity has got Liverpool fans excited, so when a private plane was reported setting off from Bournemouth for Liverpool they drew the only logical conclusion.
IF this rumour is true about the plane from Bournemouth then it could only be one person and that's Van Dijk— Jonathan (@JCLFC_) August 29, 2017
Defender Virgil Van Dijk, 26, plays for Southampton and has been linked with Liverpool all summer.
With Bournemouth Airport less than an hour drive from the Saints’ stadium, fans naturally took a huge interest in the departing private jet.
We are trying to confirm with the Captain if VVD is on the plane. The flight is due to land at John Lennon airport from Bournemouth #LFC pic.twitter.com/1VzVJUNOvv— indykaila News (@indykaila) August 29, 2017
Such was their interest in fact, that they apparently broke the flight tracking website.
Liverpool fans have crashed a worldwide flight tracking site. This summer transfer window is undefeated— charlie (@__charliethomas) August 29, 2017
Of course, once the plane arrived things didn’t stop there.
One Twitter user, Dean Coombes, found a webcam at Liverpool Airport which he could view online – and deduced that it was a club car which picked up the passengers.
Fans claimed that the car looked like the same used to pick up winger Mohamed Salah, who joined for £34.3m in June.
This theory appeared to be confirmed later too, as another Reds fan, James Welsh, claimed to have tracked down the car near Merseyside’s Stanley Park.
Comments on Welsh’s picture point out that the van’s number plate matches that of the vehicle used to pick up Salah and also Scottish left back Andrew Robertson when they were announced.
Naturally, this apparent sighting of the car got Reds fans even more worked up.
Dont lose his track, i repeat don lose his track, follow him and report back to me agent reds— Havis (@hvszk) August 29, 2017
DO NOT LOSE TRACK OF IT— Dom (@lfcdommy) August 29, 2017
@Lloydeh1 Van Dijk is signing. We've tracked his plane from Bournemouth and have found the same reg number plate car which we signed Salah— Sam 🇸🇳 🇧🇷 🇪🇬 (@Saminator69) August 29, 2017
User @Johnjohano1983 claimed to be with Welsh and said he thought the van was “heading to the Kirkby academy” – referring to Liverpool’s training ground.
Where this detective work will lead, it’s not yet clear, but it’s fair to say Liverpool fans are receiving some real kudos for their efforts.
True Detective series 3 should be about Liverpool fans on Twitter trying to work out if Virgil van Dijk is in that people carrier. pic.twitter.com/EtXj4K8sDb— Paddy Power (@paddypower) August 29, 2017
Liverpool fans – maybe, just maybe, watch this space…