Virgil van Dijk only made his full Netherlands debut in October 2015, having left Celtic for Southampton. The Dutch national squad haven’t exactly been blessed with a multitude of world class defenders in recent years, but Van Dijk had to move to the Premier League to get recognition.

Right now Erik Sviatchenko finds himself in a remarkably similar situation. Settled at Celtic, Sviatchenko has a battle to get into the Danish squad and there’s been reported interest from Southampton.

Danish newspaper BT say the English media pushed the idea of Southampton interest during the January transfer window. The claims were probably a case of assumption, given Southampton’s signing of Van Dijk was such a good move, but it still spread.

Sviatchenko himself doesn’t feel he needs to leave Celtic and Scottish football to cement his place in the Denmark squad and push into the team, and told BT: “I know that I’m on Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 15.25.01the periphery of the team. My ambition is to be a permanent part of the squad, but there is great competition and I’m only 25 years old, so I have plenty of time. My focus has however been first and foremost to get in the Celtic team and do well.

“Just because you play in a better league, it does not mean that you definitely have to play on the national team. It depends on how you deliver for your club.”

Van Dijk’s success in English football has inevitably brought more attention to others at Celtic, but, whilst he has ambitions for the future, Sviatchenko is in no rush.

Likewise, the success of players who have left, and the progress of Moussa Dembele and others, makes Celtic a more attractive destination for young footballers looking for an important step in their career.