Southampton boss Russell Martin offers update on James Ward-Prowse, Romeo Lavia, Stuart Armstrong, Joe Aribo and Jed Bednarek ahead of Championship trip to face Sheffield Wednesday

RUSSELL MARTIN has confirmed that star Southampton duo James Ward-Prowse and Romeo Lavia will be involved in the EFL curtain-raiser against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough on Friday evening, as it stands.

Saints have rejected bids in the past week from the duo, from Liverpool and West Ham respectively and their futures remains uncertain.

Speaking on Thursday morning, Saints chief Martin, who saw centre-backs Mohammed Salisu and Duje Caltea-Car leave the club this week, said: "Both be involved tomorrow (Friday) night as it stands.

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"I don't know if anything will change between now and then. Do I think they will be Southampton players by the end of the window? I have not got a clue.

Southampton's James Ward-Prowse. Picture: Getty Images.Southampton's James Ward-Prowse. Picture: Getty Images.
Southampton's James Ward-Prowse. Picture: Getty Images.

"What I hope and what I think are probably very different. If they are both not here at some point, or one of them isn't, it will be because the club and player have both had something that is beneficial for everyone.

"I think that's why it has dragged on so long, so far and I think it might continue to drag on. But both of them, while they have been here, have been great. They are at very different stages of their career."

One player definitely out is Saints' club record signing Kamaldeen Sulemana, who is injured.

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But Martin has confirmed that Stuart Armstrong, Jan Bednarek and Joe Aribo are all fit and available.

The game is likely to come too soon for new Owls signing Bambo Diaby, with the club also hoping to complete deals to sign Dutch winger Anthony Musaba and AC Milan goalkeeper Devis Vasquez.