Southampton are continuing to be linked with a loan move for Manchester United left-back Brandon Williams this month, with the latest reports suggesting that the South Coast club are ‘in the driving seat‘ to sign the 20-year-old and if he were to join, it could lead to Ryan Bertrand departing the club this summer.
Eurosport claim that Southampton are currently leading the race to sign the England U21 international this month, although Sheffield United are also showing an interest in the young defender.
Ralph Hasenhuttl has suggested that any deals Southampton do this month will be in a similar vein to the one that saw Kyle Walker-Peters join in the summer, where a loan deal becomes a permanent one should the player do enough to impress the Austrian manager and his coaching staff.
Therefore, they are clearly contemplating the idea of Williams joining on a permanent deal in the summer if he is able to perform well in his loan spell, which could be bad news for the future of Bertrand.
The former Chelsea man is out of contract this summer and whilst Southampton are said to be keen to extend his deal, the signing of another left-back is unlikely to help them to convince the 31-year-old to stay.
In December, the experienced defender did suggest that he was keen to stay with Southampton for the long haul whilst also hinting that a new deal was potentially not too far away.
However, it is nearly a month later and there has not been any official announcement of a new contract for Bertrand, with foreign clubs now free to negotiate with the Englishman with the view to signing him on a Bosman transfer in the summer.
Certainly, Bertrand’s attacking returns have dipped in recent seasons, whilst no goals or assists in 16 top-flight appearances this season, whilst Williams has managed one goal and three assists in his 42 senior appearances for Manchester United, whilst also regularly providing assists with the academy sides.
Therefore, if Hasenhuttl wants to add some more attacking gusto on his left-hand side, he may well favour Williams over Bertrand if he arrives on loan from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side this month, which could, as a result, lead to Bertrand departing the South Coast club for nothing this summer.