Southampton manager provides update on Romeo Lavia

Romeo Lavia will feature for Southampton in their Championship opener this Friday, according to manager Russell Martin.

Liverpool have been in talks with the Saints over a deal for Lavia for some time, with the Reds identifying the 19-year-old Belgian as their number one target to replace Fabinho.

Jurgen Klopp's side have seen bids of £38m and £41m, including add-ons, rejected by the Championship side, who are holding out for £50m, amid supposed interest from Chelsea and Manchester United among others.

One report has claimed that Liverpool are ready to submit a third and final bid to sign Lavia. However, time is running out until the start of the Premier League season on 13 August.

Meanwhile, Southampton manager Martin has insisted that Lavia will be a part of the team to play Sheffield Wednesday in the season opener on Friday night.

However he refused to be drawn on whether Lavia – or West Ham target James Ward-Prowse – would still be at the club by the end of the transfer window.

READ MORE: Romeo Lavia – what Southampton's transition killer would bring to Liverpool

“Both [Lavia and Ward-Prowse] will be involved tomorrow night as it stands, I don’t know if anything will change between now and then,” Martin said in his pre-match press conference. “Do I think they will be Southampton players by the end of the window? I have not got a clue. What I hope and what I think are probably very different.

“However, it would be pointless to come out and say I think they’ll be here or I don’t because ultimately I have no control over that really. If they’re both not here at some point or one of them isn’t it will be because the club and the player have both had something that is beneficial for everyone.

“I think that’s why it has dragged on so long so far and I think it might continue to drag on, but both of them while they have been here have been great, at very different stages of their career.”

In addition to Lavia, Liverpool are also investigating a move for Fluminense midfielder Andre, while they Reds could still bring in a left-sided defender too.

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