Romeo Lavia Denied Liverpool Transfer Audition After Ruthless Southampton U-Turn



Romeo Lavia was consigned to a watching brief as Southampton kicked off the new Championship season with a 2-1 win over Sheffield Wednesday on Friday night.

Lavia, 19, has been heavily linked with a move away from the Saints following their relegation from the Premier League back in May and Liverpool have already seen two substantial offers for the talented teenager rejected this summer.

New Southampton boss Russell Martin had insisted that Lavia would feature on Friday night after the second of those Liverpool bids were rejected earlier this week. However, Lavia was left on the bench as Martin made the perfect start to his reign.

Southampton manager goes back on his word in Romeo Lavia transfer boost for Liverpool

Martin was defiant in the build-up to the match at Hillsborough after being asked about Lavia and James Ward-Prowse, who has also been linked with a move elsewhere.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference, he said: “Both will be involved as it stands, I don’t know if anything will change between now and then. 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.”


But Martin went back on his word and denied Lavia any sort of opportunity to impress at Hillsborough. After naming Lavia on the bench initially, Martin opted against bringing the highly-rated midfielder on – even when Lee Gregory cancelled out Adam Armstrong’s opener to restore parity.

Southampton midfielder Romeo Lavia

Romeo Lavia was left on the bench for Southampton’s 2-1 win over Sheffield Wednesday

And Martin even ruthlessly brought on Joe Aribo – another Saints midfielder – to freshen up his engine room ahead of Lavia in the closing stages of the match.

Southampton’s stance on Lavia could offer fresh encouragement to Liverpool, who are in need of midfield reinforcements before next weekend’s Premier League opener at Chelsea. The Reds are light on options after Jordan Henderson and Fabinho both quit Anfield and moved to the Saudi Pro League earlier this week.


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