September 15, 2017 / 9:07 AM / a year ago

Southampton midfielder Hojberg to miss Palace clash

(Reuters) - Southampton midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojberg has returned home to Denmark after the birth of his first child and will miss Saturday’s Premier League trip to Crystal Palace, manager Mauricio Pellegrino has said.

Hojberg, 22, who arrived at St Mary’s from Bayern Munich, made 22 league appearance for Southampton last season, but has not featured in the first five this term.

“I’d like to congratulate Pierre Hojbjerg and his family and him on the birth of his daughter,” Pellegrino told reporters.

“Pierre is at home in his country now. He’s the only player that’s away, all the rest are okay to be a part of the team.”

Pellegrino also confirmed centre back Virgil van Dijk could return to the squad for the first time since January.

The 26-year-old featured for the Saints’ under-23 side on Monday after the club fended off interest from Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea for the Dutchman during the transfer window.

Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty

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