Southampton manager Ronald Koeman has warned Liverpool FC that they will have to submit a ‘good’ bid in order to sign their transfer target Dejan Lovren.
Dejan Lovren’s future at St Mary’s stadium has come under a lot of speculation this summer with Liverpool being linked with a move for the center back. But Southampton manager Ronald Koeman has warned the Merseyside club that they will have to meet their demands in order to sign him.
The Croatian international joined Southampton last summer from French club Lyon and became an integral part of the side. Lovren formed a wonderful partnership with Jose Fonte at the back as the Saints finished eighth in the Premier League and statistically had the sixth best defense in the league.
Fonte’s performances have drawn a lot of attention and both Liverpool and Arsenal have been linked with the Croatian center back this summer.
Southampton though are keen to hold on to Lovren having lost a host of key players in this transfer window already. The departure of Mauricio Pochettino to Tottenham Hotspur at the end of last season has initiated a stream of players leaving the St Mary’s Stadium this summer.
Left back Luke Shaw has joined Manchester United, while Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana have signed up for Liverpool. Southampton are desperate to retain the rest of the stars and are ensuring that teams have to pay over the top to sign their players.
Lovren though is believed to be keen to follow Lallana and Lambert to Anfield. Initial reports suggested that Southampton have turned down two bids from Liverpool to the defender. But Ronald Koeman has revealed that the club is yet to receive any offer from the Merseyside club.
“We have had no bid from Liverpool for Lovren, that is the situation.
“If that does not change, he will continue to play at Southampton.
“We know there is a lot of interest in our players, I think that is normal. But we have to wait, we work on the team.” – Koeman said.
Southampton have been linked with a move for Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar, who shined for Netherlands in the World Cup, but Koeman insisted that their activity in the transfer market will depend on Lovren’s future.
“I know him (Vlaar) from when he was playing at Feyenoord.
“It depends on the (Lovren) situation but we will decide who we bring in. There are a lot of rumours in football and I can do nothing about that.” – He added.
Southampton are believed to be holding out for a fee of £25m fee for the former Lyon defender, who was signed for only £8.5m last year. It will be interesting to see if Liverpool agrees to match that fee and pay over the top in order to sign their third Southampton player this summer. Koeman has also hinted that the club is ready to play hardball with the Reds over this transfer and that Liverpool will have to submit a ‘good’ bid in order to be considered seriously.
“If they are interested, they have to come with a bid, and a good one, and then we can speak about that, because the player likes to move.
“Players have to be happy in Southampton – they have to fight for the colours of Southampton and, if not, okay, but always if there is a good bid on the table.” – Koeman told the press.