According to a report by German publication Bild, Southampton turned down the opportunity to sign Schalke midfielder Max Meyer for €10m (£8.8m).
Well, the 22-year-old looks set to leave the Bundesliga outfit when his contract expires at the end of the season, and he has already been suspended by his club following an argument between his advisor and manager Christian Heidel over a bullying claim.
Bild says that the Germany international, who has 24 caps for his country, was offered to Saints, but they decided against bringing him to St Mary’s, as they continue their battle to stay in the Premier League when they face fellow strugglers Swansea City in a huge clash at the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday night.
It has been a tough campaign for the German, whose contract situation and stretched relationship with his manager look to have affected his performances on the pitch.
The 22-year-old has made 28 appearances in all competitions for the Bundesliga outfit this term – scoring one goal and providing a further assist – but he seems unlikely to play for them again following his suspension.
Despite primarily being a central midfielder, Meyer has spent much of the campaign playing a more defensive role for his side, and he will probably hope to play a little further forward when he does move on this summer.
While it may seem confusing in many respects because of some of the top clubs Meyer has been linked with in the past and the fact he is clearly talented, it isn’t in other ways – with one potential reason being because they knew they could get him for free this summer.
The south coast outfit don’t even know what division they’re going to be in next season, and they may well be targeting a different approach to transfers should they preserve their Premier League status.
The fact that the midfielder has fallen out with his club and been suspended certainly won’t have impressed a Saints outfit that are looking to restore some of the team spirit they seem to have lost in the last couple of years, and they certainly don’t want another Sofiane Boufal or Manolo Gabbiadini situation – the former has been banished to train on his own following an altercation with Mark Hughes, while the latter has gone missing when the going has got tough.