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Danny Ings: The Southampton striker’s contract situation is “not perfect”

Ings scored 13 goals in 33 games for Southampton last season

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl said “there is no reason to sell Danny Ings” but the striker who goes into his last year without a new contract is “not a perfect situation”.

Ings has scored 41 Premier League goals in three years at Saints after joining from Liverpool.

“We need this player, we want him to play for us,” said Hasenhüttl.

“But I think it’s never helpful to go into last season with a year to go – I think he should know that.”

In an interview with the sports editor of BBC Radio Solent, Adam Blackmore, the Austrian added: “Reports that he does not accept our contract, he does not want to renew his contract, does not help anyone – not him, not us. I don’t know who sent these messages, it’s not from our side, definitely not.

“We are not interested in blaming the player or finding out that he does not feel good here at this club, not interested in not helping to do the best for us. It is his position, if so it would be a shame. “

  • Hear the complete Hasenhüttl interview Here

Ings initially joined Saints on loan from Liverpool before making the move permanent in July 2019 for £ 20 million.

He suffered two serious knee injuries in his three years at Anfield, but regained form on the South Coast, scoring 22 Premier League goals in 2019-20 and 12 goals last season.

After Ings was on Gareth Southgate’s English squad for games in September and October 2020, a number of small issues, including a positive Covid test, hampered his chances of getting into the Euro 2020 squad.

Ings' chances of making it onto England's Euro 2020 squad were hampered by an injuryIngs’ chances of making it onto England’s Euro 2020 squad were hampered by an injury

Hasenhüttl added: “He’s our player for another year, we’ve paid a lot of money for him. When we brought him here we invested a lot to get him to the highest level and how he’s doing right now all those injuries he’s had gave him time to recover, gave him the time to admit something to do.

“There is no reason to sell him, but it is always a risk for the player going into the final year without a contract. So it’s never good for anyone, not for us, not for him, because you never know what can happen in football – injuries can happen that nobody wants. “The people on our team tell him what to do, we do have our opinion about what we want from him, he’s our player and we’d love to see him here, but one thing is also clear: if he doesn’t renew his contract, it’s not a perfect situation for him, it’s not perfect situation for us. “

Analysis – “No requests for star strikers yet”

BBC Radio Solent sports editor Adam Blackmore

There is no problem between saints and ings. He loves playing for the club but understandably wants to see if he can get back to playing at the highest level and get closer to European football as he nears his 29th birthday.

We all know there are three outcomes here – he goes into the transfer window, he gives Saints another year and goes off, or he signs the deal that Saints has had on the table for a while.

The club would rather have another year without their top scorer, that’s better than losing him now. But as Hasenhüttl says, it is not ideal for anyone to have a player whose contract is about to expire.

So far, none of the clubs Ings would hope to move have made a request. Over time, Danny’s risk of waiting for a chain of events that leads to a move increases. With his injury history, he has to be careful not to play too much.

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