Southampton manager provides update on Liverpool target Romeo Lavia

Southampton manager Russell Martin has admitted there will be 'movement' in his squad, as Romeo Lavia was left out of their EFL Cup defeat.

The Saints suffered a shock 3-1 loss to Gillingham in the EFL Cup first round at Priestfield on Tuesday evening, but Liverpool target Lavia was not involved in the game.

Liverpool have seen three bids for the Belgian midfielder rejected so far, as Southampton hold out for their £50m asking price.

The Reds received a blow earlier this week when their offer of £45m, including add-ons, for the 19-year-old midfielder was turned down, but Saints manager Martin has seemingly conceded that Lavia could still move before 1 September. However, any deal before the weekend appears unlikely.

"We have a big group, but only so many players that can help us," Martin told BBC Radio Solent."There needs to be movement for sure. Jason [Wilcox] 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."

Addressing why certain players including Lavia were not used in the EFL Cup defeat, Martin said: "The guys we left behind today isn't out of lack of respect for the competition or anything like that.

"It's about we need to see everyone out on the pitch at some point because we might need people. Some people we think might go might end up staying, and some people we think are gonna stay might end up going. It's so fluid."

Whatever happens, Liverpool are highly unlikely to complete a transfer before they kick off the new Premier League campaign with a trip to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Jurgen Klopp has conceded the set-up he deploys for the game against Chelsea will be "a formation for the Chelsea game, not for the whole season."

In addition to Lavia, the Reds have also been linked with Andre Trindade (Fluminense) and Ryan Gravenberch (Bayern Munich), while Anfield Watch exclusively reported the Reds interest in Leicester City's Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall.

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