Fulham have reportedly lodged a £10m bid for Southampton left back Matt Targett, after the defender spent last season on loan with the Cottagers, and largely impressed in his stint with the London club.
Arriving into Craven Cottage for short loan spell during January last season, the 22-year-old made his debut for Fulham on January 27 - coming on as a second half substitute against Barnsley. From then on, he featured in another 17 matches for the club as they managed to clinch promotion through the play offs.
And now, according to Sky Sports reporter Kaveh Solhekol, Fulham are keen to make that move permanent, and have even offered the Saints a £10m bid for Targett's return.
However, Mark Hughes doesn't want to sell the full back, and actually sees the young defender in his future plans at St Mary's instead.
Fulham make £10m bid for Southampton’s Matt Targett.— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) June 22, 2018
Was on loan at Fulham last season. Southampton not interested in selling and see him as part of their future plans
This could hint at Targett being groomed to be the replacement for Ryan Bertrand. It's been reported this summer that the England international could be on his way out of the club in the coming months, and rather than buying a player to take his place, Southampton could simply promote from within.
In light of this, Fulham now find themselves significantly weakened in the full back department. If Targett isn't allowed to return to the club, it would mean that the newly promoted side are without two defenders that played a key role in their promotion push - having already lost the highly rated Ryan Fredericks on a free transfer.
A depleted squad is not what any manager wants, but there is still plenty of time left in the transfer window to fix it.