It hasn't been an easy introduction to Premier League management for new Southampton boss Ronald Koeman, and the Dutchman is prepared to go to great lengths, including a fine, to keep want-away star Dejan Lovren in-line at St Mary's.
The Saints have been left reeling thus far in the transfer market, and have lost many of the key members of their squad. Luke Shaw departed for Manchester United, while Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert will join forces at Liverpool.
Possibly a victim of their own success last season, the South Coast club are facing another fight to keep hold of influential centre-back Lovren who only signed from Lyon last summer.
The Croatian, who appeared at the World Cup, has been the target of intense speculation this summer. North London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur have been linked, however it is Brendan Rodgers' side who are most likely to land the tall defender and complete a hat-trick of deals from Southampton.
Lovren has already handed in a transfer request ahead of the new season and admitted his head is already in Liverpool after the Reds had two bids of around £20 million rejected. The Merseysiders have plenty of money to spend following their record sale of striker Luis Suarez to Barcelona.
Koeman fights back
However, Koeman - who replaces Mauricio Pochettino - is adamant that he will not accept his new defender's comments and the club will not be forced to sell like they did with Shaw, Lallana and Lambert.
"I have spoken to Dejan twice. He was very clear. But I told him I wanted to keep him in the team," the 51-year-old claimed in his first press conference.
"We have to do what the best is for the club. He has a contract, he has to come back on Sunday, but I don't know what will happen after that.
"First of all we like to keep all that kind of information within the club, not out in the press. That was not a good thing.
"I know Liverpool have got a lot of money now after the Suarez transfer. Normally they will spend that money and buy players, and maybe they will buy one player from Southampton.
"The final decision is with the board of the club. I hope Dejan will come back. He has to come back on Sunday. A few days ago he said it was a difficult situation and he will talk to the club and his agent, but he knows he has to come back because he is still a Southampton player.
"I wasn't happy with what he said. Maybe we will speak about a fine."
Koeman is keen to rebuild at St Marys as he was unable to revert the exit of the club's stars by the time he was appointed. Dusan Tadic - a highly rated winger from Twente - has become the first replacement for the departed trio.
However, Lovren may not be the only player to seek an exit either. Morgan Schneiderlin, who played in midfield for France at the World Cup, has also been tipped to leave.
Write for GiveMeSport! Sign-up to the GMS Writing Academy here: https://gms.to/1a2u3KU
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms