New Southampton head coach Claude Puel is confident about Portugal international Jose Fonte staying at the club, despite reported interest from Manchester United.

The 32-year old is one of the key targets for new Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is keen to sign an experienced central defender going into the new season.

After contributing massively to Portugal’s Euro winning campaign, Fonte is heavily linked to Manchester United as Mourinho was reportedly made contact with the player.

However, new manager Claude Puel, who has replaced Ronald Koeman, is set to give the club’s captain Fonte a major role in the upcoming season as the Portugal international is at the centre of Puel’s plans.

He said: “I do not think there is a possibility for Jose to leave us.

“I am sure that he can play all these games, he is very proficient.

“When I see him on the pitch he is interesting, very professional and he has a good attitude.

“(Fonte has) re-joined in training. I do not know if he will start the game (on Saturday) but we will see.

“The market window is difficult for the club and the players but it is very important for the team.

“Many clubs can be interested in players. That is normal.”

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