‘He has a lot going on’ – Southampton boss speaks out amid ongoing Romeo Lavia to Liverpool links

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Southampton manager Russell Martin has spoken out about Romeo Lavia’s situation amid the midfielder’s ongoing links with Liverpool.

The Saints rejected an opening bid of £37m from the Anfield club for the 19-year-old on Tuesday (The Athletic), just a few hours before he featured in a pre-season friendly against Bournemouth at St Mary’s.

While the teenager has been the subject of transfer speculation all summer, things have accelerated over the past 24 hours following that offer, although it seems his focus hasn’t been deterred.

Fabrizio Romano took to Twitter on Wednesday morning to relay comments from Martin on Lavia, with the Southampton boss praising the player for how he’s coped with ‘the noise’ but sitting on the fence as to the Belgium international’s eventual fate this summer.

As per the journalist’s tweet, the 39-year-old said: “He has a lot going on in his head… not easy for a young player to handle the noise, but he’s handled it well. Latest news is very public, he may still be here, he may not”.

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Despite the ongoing speculation over his future, Lavia has featured in all four of Southampton’s pre-season friendlies so far, even starting the Bournemouth match last night amid the heightened transfer discourse.

Amid this major potential crossroads in his career, the youngster indeed deserves commendation for getting on with his job over the past fortnight and continuing as if none of the ‘noise’ is going on in the background.

Martin’s non-committal reply as to whether the 19-year-old would stay or go suggests that the Saints realise they could eventually lose him, even if their £50m valuation makes it clear that they’d much rather retain his services.

A tweet from Sacha Tavolieri overnight claimed that Southampton want at least a £40m fixed fee for Lavia, so they may be willing to cede some ground on their original asking price if Liverpool return with a sufficiently inviting bid.

It’ll be very interesting to see what offer the Reds go back with, and what the Saints’ response will be this time.

You can see Romano’s tweet below, via @FabrizioRomano on Twitter:

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