Southampton confirm interest in Victor Wanyama, Leandro Damiao and Ever Banega
The Saints are eager to push on from securing safety last term
Thursday 04 July 2013
Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino has confirmed an interest in Victor Wanyama, Leandro Damiao and Ever Banega.
Saints are preparing for their second season in the top flight and have ambitious plans for the future, with European football mentioned as possibility.
Earlier this month Lyon's Dejan Lovren arrived for £8.5million and there is clearly still money in the bank for signings at St Mary's.
Pochettino today confirmed a move for Celtic midfielder Wanyama "could happen" still, while there is interest in Valencia's Banega and Brazil international Damiao.
"We manage a lot of information about very good players," the Saints boss said. "One of them is Damiao, also Banega and also Wanyama.
"We are managing the situation as well as we can at the moment.
"The main thing is that we as a club, Southampton, are managing when these negotiations happen so that is what is happening.
"We are managing when these players are going to be signed and how we sign them.
"Our goals are very clear. I am also not trapped by the fact that I said I wanted to have our transfer window closed by July 1.
"We are not interested in 15 or 20 players. We are interested in maybe two or three key players.
"At the same time, I also want to say our squad at the moment is really good and it is not like we are trapped in the sense that we need these players to be a better squad.
"Our squad as it is really good already, but we just want to bring in two or three players that reinforce key areas in the squad to become an even better team."
Internacional forward Damiao has been a reported long-time target of Tottenham and his agent confirmed there are talks involving an unnamed club.
Pochettino knows Valencia and Argentina midfielder Banega well from his time managing in Spain with Espanyol, although it appears his arrival would depend on a move for Wanyama.
The Celtic midfielder, subject of a reported £12million bid from Saints which was accepted by the Scottish champions, reportedly failed to agree terms on a move to the south coast due to issues with his representatives.
Cardiff have been mentioned as another possible destination for Wanyama and Pochettino insists a deal is still on.
"It could happen," he said. "We have certain positions that we want to reinforce. I'm confident that our goals will be met."
Pochettino also confirmed that a number of squad players will be leaving the club this summer.
Billy Sharp, Dean Hammond and Tadanari Lee are among those players, as are Lee Barnard, Richard Chaplow and Steve de Ridder.
Other squad players also look set to be on their way out as the Argentinian plans for the future.
"They are a group of players that, because of different reasons, we are not counting on in the future," Pochettino said.
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