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Genk's Joakim Maehle: 'Southampton wanted me in January'

Maehle: 'Southampton wanted me in January'
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Genk defender Joakim Maehle claims that Southampton were interested in signing him during the January transfer window.

Genk defender Jaokim Maehle has claimed that Southampton wanted to sign him during the January transfer window.

Recently-appointed boss Ralph Hasenhuttl has been in the process of reshaping the club's first-team squad, and right-back Cedric Soares has been allowed to link up with Inter Milan.

Maehle - also a right-sided defender - has impressed during his time in Belgium, and the Denmark Under-21 international has suggested that he was provided with the opportunity to move to the Premier League.

The 21-year-old told Het Belang van Limburg: "I'm not going to say that I wasn't interested. This was a nice proposal from a big club from a top competition but at the same time I have full understanding of Genk's point of view.

"They have also been very clear from the beginning: in this winter market all starters ​​remain on board. I can only respect that. Because let me make it clear: I am still very happy here. I do not grieve but fully focus on the rest of the season. We still have so much to gain."

Maehle currently has less than 18 months remaining on his contract.

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