With the January transfer window slamming shut at the end of last month, Southampton were predictably quiet really but that was to be expected given manager Ralph Hasenhuttl’s words and the focus being on trimming the group slightly.
Work in the background was ongoing though and Joakim Maehle has confirmed that we had a firm interest in securing his services, but parent club Genk just weren’t willing to deal so late on in the window.
Quoted by Belgian outlet Het Belang van Limburg with reports suggesting we had offered £10-12million for the 21-year-old, he certainly left the door wide open for a return in the summer – which remaining respectful to his current employers.
“I’m not going to say that I wasn’t interested. This was a nice proposal from a big club from a top competition. But at the same time, I have full understanding of Genk’s point of view. They have also been very clear from the beginning: in this winter market all starters remain on board. I can only respect that. Because let me make it clear – I am still very happy here. I do not grieve but fully focus on the rest of the season. We still have so much to gain.”
The Dane’s choice of words certainly went over with Southampton fans who took the time to react to the interview on social media.
He'll get on the train in the summer…..along with Che Adams……we HAVE to stay in this division for it to happen though……
— ben kyle (@benkyle77) February 4, 2019
Nice to see players talking positively about us and sounds like good ambition shown by #saintsfc too ????????????
— Scott Hamilton (@ScottHammy87) February 4, 2019
Not going to pretend I know about this guy as a footballer. However this attitude seems like the kind of guy we would want on board… even if we have to wait until summer.
— Nick Carr (@carrn1982) February 4, 2019
The lad seems keen and down to earth. Just a matter of agreeing a fee and fighting off other clubs
— Saint Harris (@LHarrisSFC) February 4, 2019
A name worth remembering possibly for the summer.