Southampton manager Russell Martin openly admitted that ‘anything can happen’ when it comes to potential exits from the club this month, with his comments potentially raising Liverpool’s hopes of a swoop for Romeo Lavia.
The 19-year-old has been the Reds’ hottest transfer target for the past few weeks, with three separate bids being rejected by the south coast club, but there’s no need for Jorg Schmadtke to give up hope yet in this particular pursuit.
The midfielder played no part as the Saints exited the Carabao Cup against Gillingham last night, and the Saints boss was inevitably asked about the player’s future after the game.
Martin told BBC Radio Solent: “We have a big group, but only so many players that can help us. There needs to be movement for sure. Jason [Wilcox, Southampton director of football] has been very honest about it, and he feels exactly the same way, and so do the ownership group.
“But also, there needs to be movement that suits us as a club. I don’t envisage anything changing between now and the weekend, but it’s football, right, so anything can happen.”
The Saints manager added that the situation regarding potential player exits from St Mary’s is ‘so fluid’, also hinting that players currently expected to stay could end up leaving, and vice versa.
Southampton have stuck rigidly to their £50m valuation of Lavia, with Liverpool’s latest bid of £46m being dismissed, but from Martin’s comments, it appears that the Saints are somewhat prepared for life after the Belgian at St Mary’s.
Ultimately, every player has their price, and the 37-year-old has previously suggested that the south coast club need to trim their squad this month, so that should offer the Reds plenty of hope that they could eventually get their man.
The need for a defensive midfield addition at Anfield was again laid bare during Monday night’s friendly against Darmstadt, as despite Jurgen Klopp’s side winning 3-1, they were far too open at times, not least for the goal they conceded in the 10th minute.
At this juncture, the importance of bringing in a new number 6 outweighs the justifiable belief that Liverpool could be paying over the odds for a player in that position; and in Lavia’s case, his vast potential at the age of just 19 offers much hope that he’ll grow into a future superstar.