Southampton remain in a precarious position within the Premier League and the tension will surely only be building at the St. Mary’s Stadium as the season draws to an end.
There is no denying that Ralph Hasenhuttl brought a breath of fresh air to the south coast when he arrived in December, and it appears he could be about to use the upcoming summer transfer window as another time to make changes to the side he inherited.
What’s the News?
According to a report by The Sun (print edition 23/4/17, page 53 via HITC Sport), Hasenhuttl is prepared to offload Jack Stephens this summer.
The Austrian manager appears to be keen on making wholesale changes in his first summer transfer window in charge of Southampton and the defender is believed to be one of the names on his list he wants to dispose of.
It is also claimed Charlie Austin, Jordy Clasie and Wesley Hoedt are facing the chop this summer, although those names probably come as less of a surprise.
Stephens has been a regular in the Southampton team this season under Hasenhuttl, which makes the news a little surprising that he could be offloaded in the summer.
The £7.2million-rated enforcer, per Transfermarkt, has made 20 appearances in the Premier League so far, however, with the likes of Maya Yoshida, Jannick Vestergaard and Jan Bednarek all performing to a reasonable standard in what has been a difficult campaign.
However, recently, the 25-year-old has played bit-part roles and was hooked at half-time in their 3-1 defeat to Newcastle United at the weekend, whilst he was an unused substitute against the likes of Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool and Manchester United.
Stephens, who has come through the youth ranks at the club, has not quite kicked on as much as many would have hoped he would have and with the emerging talent from the south coast starting to come through, it appears that it was only a matter of time before Hasenhuttl looked elsewhere.
Southampton fans, are you surprised that Stephens could be on his way out of the club this summer? Join in with the discussion below by sharing your thoughts with us.