Southampton transfer news: Insider drops major update on £28.8m talisman's future

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl

James Ward-Prowse will not leave Southampton during the January window despite interest from Premier League rivals, according to transfer insider Dean Jones.

Ward-Prowse is a key member of Saints’ squad but there has been speculation that Aston Villa and Newcastle United are interested in prising the club captain away from St Mary’s.

What’s the latest news involving Ward-Prowse?

It has been claimed that Aston Villa could reignite their interest in Ward-Prowse following the Midlands club’s appointment of Steven Gerrard as their new head coach last month.

Villa saw a £25million bid rejected by Southampton during the summer transfer window before deciding against returning to the south coast with another proposal.

Although there has been a change in the Villa Park dugout, with Dean Smith shown the door following a downturn in form, Ward-Prowse has previously revealed he is looking to emulate the Villans’ new chief Gerrard during the remainder of his career.

Should the Midlands club strengthen their interest by lodging another offer, they could be made to contend with stiff competition from Newcastle United as it has been reported that they are plotting a January bid.

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It comes after the Magpies’ £305million takeover in October, which resulted in the Tynesiders becoming the richest club in world football.

However, Southampton will be in a strong negotiating position as Ward-Prowse committed his future to Saints by signing a five-year contract in August.

What has Dean Jones said about Ward-Prowse?

Despite the interest from two of Southampton’s Premier League rivals, Jones believes Ward-Prowse will still be on Saints’ books by the time the January transfer window slams shut.

Ralph Hasenhuttl, who has been in the St Mary’s hot seat since 2018, will be keen to keep the 27-year-old at the club.

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The transfer insider does not foresee the central midfielder, who is valued at £28.8million by Transfermarkt, moving on to pastures new.

When asked whether he could see Villa returning for Saints’ skipper, Jones told GIVEMESPORT: “With Ward-Prowse, I don’t think he will leave Southampton, to be honest. I don’t see it happening.”

How has Ward-Prowse performed so far this season?

Ward-Prowse failed to miss a single minute of either of the past two seasons but that incredible run came to an end earlier this season when he was sent off during the defeat to Chelsea in October.

That resulted in him missing the Premier League clashes against Leeds United and Burnley but he has returned to the fray and only missed 10 minutes of top flight action since.

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Ward-Prowse took his number of England caps up to nine and netted in the 5-0 World Cup qualification win over Andorra two months ago as well.

However, he was unable to add to that tally in the November international break as he was forced to withdraw from Gareth Southgate’s squad after falling ill.

Read More – January Transfer Window 2022: When does it open, when does it close and which players are going to move?

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