VIRGIL VAN DIJK has warned England that Holland intend to take out their frustrations on them at Wembley tomorrow night.
The former Celtic centre-back admitted his international team-mates are still furious they failed to reach the Euro Finals in France this summer.
Holland flopped embarrassingly in their qualifying group to finish fourth behind the Czech Republic, Iceland and Turkey.
The last time his country was absent from the European Championships was in 1984.
Now Van Dijk, who cost Southampton £13million in his switch from the Hoops last summer, insists they want to inflict pain on Roy Hodgson’s side, still on a high after their remarkable 3-2 comeback win in Germany.
He said: “We owe our fans after what happened in the qualifiers and, as players, we all feel we have to answer to ourselves, too.
“We know we should have done so much better.
“It is now time to come up with some very good performances.
“Our road to the World Cup Finals in Russia starts at Wembley.”
Ironically, the classy back-four operator could come up against his former Parkhead and current Saints’ colleague Fraser Forster at Wembley.
The keeper came off the substitutes’ bench in Berlin just before the interval after Jack Butland had been injured at Germany’s opening goal.
And Van Dijk also believes he is now a far better player than he was in his two years with the SPFL champions following his £2.6million move from Groningen in June 2013.
He gave the credit to Southampton boss Ronald Koeman for improving his game – especially his levels of concentration.
Van Dijk admitted: “Don’t ask me why, but in the past I used to have ‘sleeping moments’.
“This manager has got me playing at the highest level of my career.
“I love every minute now in the Premier League and I love playing against the best strikers in England.”
Gaffer Koeman revealed his secret. “Virgil needs a strong approach,” he said. “He has so much potential, but with his character I have to be on top of him all the time.
“I’ve discovered a funny way of getting the best out of him. I have to provoke him and make him ANGRY.
“When he enters that pitch in an angry mood, then he is the best defender there is.”
Van Dijk, 24, also reckons the Dutch should follow his club’s example.
He said: “The team spirit at Southampton is the way we can achieve success with Holland.
“The level of the management is incredibly high. There is so much international experience in our coaching staff.
“They have created an atmosphere where experienced players pass on their knoweldge to the younger players.
“Every day at Southampton is a joy.”
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