Saints boss wants Alex to stay

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Southampton manager Nigel Adkins has urged teenage winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to spend another year at St Mary's.

The 17-year-old has plenty of admirers among managers in the Barclays Premier League, and has been strongly linked with a summer move to Arsenal. Adkins understands why Oxlade-Chamberlain has been unable to ignore talk of possibly joining one of England's leading clubs, but he hopes the player will agree to stay on.

"Obviously in the last couple of days there have been a few comments that have come out nationally," Adkins said on Sky Sports News.

"The expectation for a 17-year-old boy and his parents to be linked with big football clubs obviously will play on people's minds, but I think he's handled himself ever so well, and he's loved at Southampton.

"We believe it's better for him to stay at Southampton and play his football and keep developing.

"We've got to try to make sure we look after a young boy who's handled himself ever so well but has been placed in a situation with speculation. It's speculation with big football clubs people always dream about."

Oxlade-Chamberlain was quoted this week expressing fears that delaying a move to a big club could hamper his future prospects, and saying he feels ready to make the step up immediately.

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