Manchester United have reportedly played down the speculation linking them with a move to sign Mario Lemina from Southampton.
The Red Devils had reportedly enquired over a deal to sign the midfielder, but according to claims from The Manchester Evening News, sources within the club have refuted these indications.
Instead, it is believed that Southampton are attempting to drum up interest in the Gabon international, who arrived in an £18 million deal from Juventus in the summer of 2017.
The MEN’s report claims that the Saints are hoping to trigger an auction for Lemina’s signature in the hope that they can sell him for a fee worth in the region of £30 million this summer.
Lemina is determined to secure a move away from St Mary’s Stadium ahead of next season and was excluded from Ralph Hasenhuttl’s 26-man squad that travelled to Austria for pre-season training this week.
Whether or not Manchester United will firm up their apparent interest in signing the 25-year-old remains to be seen, with Paul Pogba’s future at Old Trafford up in the air.
Players who Southampton could look to shift this summer
Carrillo is surplus to requirements at Southampton. The club-record signing could be offloaded this summer.
Boufal has been linked with Ligue 1 clubs ahead of next season. Following his loan at Celta Vigo, he could be moved on.
Forster has been up for sale for numerous transfer windows now. It would be good to see him secure a switch from St Mary’s.
Reed had a good season on loan at Blackburn Rovers. At 24, however, he needs to be playing regular football, and he won’t get that at Southampton.