Jack Cork says that Saints’ refusal to sell him in January has given him confidence that he remains part of the club’s future plans.
The midfielder was the subject of interest from Swansea towards the end of the January window, but Saints rejected the Welsh club’s advances.
“I think it all happened quite late in the transfer window and I didn't really know much about it,” said Cork.
“The first thing I sort of heard about it was the manager saying 'he is not going anywhere'.
“Nothing really more happened and it was nice to hear the manager say he didn't want me to go and was not for sale.
“It gave me a little bit of confidence that I would be a good part of his plans.”
Earlier in the season, though, Cork had not been sure where he would fit into the picture at St Mary’s, having lost his place in the team to Victor Wanyama.
While he was keen to stay last month, the 24-year-old admitted that he might have been willing to look at a move had the option been available at a different time.
“I think if you had asked me the same question earlier in the season, I might have said something different because, obviously, Victor came in and I wasn't playing as many games as I would like to have been playing at the start of the season,” he said.
“Obviously, that changed in November or December time, playing a lot more games, and I think it showed that I still had a part to play in the squad and in the team.
“Hopefully if I can keep the form going, I can still have a big part to play in the team. I will see what happens in the future and towards the end of the season.”
While Cork stayed at St Mary’s last month, there was one high-profile exit from the club, with record-signing Dani Osvaldo joining Juventus on loan.
That move followed the striker’s alleged headbutt on teammate José Fonte in training.
While Cork offered no bad words about Osvaldo, he did agree that it was probably best for all concerned that he made the loan switch.
“I think so. We've got such a tight group of players and everyone gets along really well,” said Cork.
“I mean, Dani was a really good lad as well. I am not really too sure what happened with the whole situation - I think that’s between some other lads in the club.
“We’ve got such a good group here and I don’t think anyone wanted to upset the bond we had.
“It was just one of those things. It wasn’t anyone’s decision apart from the manager or someone higher. They made their decision and he has made his move.”
Asked whether the players didn’t think that Osvaldo could come back following the training ground incident, Cork said: “No, I wouldn't say that. I’ve had arguments with lots of players on the training ground.
“Obviously, I’ve not done anything physical to other lads, but sometimes people can make-up and get over it and sometimes they can’t.
“Arguments is just football and everything really. It is just one of those things and I think Dani must’ve had a few talks with people.
“It wasn't anyone saying that we wanted him to go or anything, because I really got on with him, and I know a few of the lads really got on with him.
“It must have just have been something they talked about and decided that was best.”