CALEB Watts revealed that he sought a loan move to get experience in men’s football himself as he “wasn’t getting the minutes,” this season at Saints, after linking up with League Two Crawley Town.

It will be the 19-year-old’s first loan spell in the senior game, after impressing for Dave Horseman’s B team this campaign with one goal and six assists in 12 appearances.

Watts has already made his senior Saints bow, including a Premier League debut versus Arsenal in January 2021.

And the ambitious Australian youth international has opened up on how he targeted a temporary spell elsewhere to further his development.

Speaking to the Reds’ club website, Watts said: “It was great (to make his Saints first-team debut), I was really grateful for the manager to get the opportunity.

“But I wasn’t getting the minutes this season so I’ve got to go and find them somewhere else. I wanted to play men’s football and I thought I’d get a decent chance here.

He continued: “He (Crawley manager John Yems) seems like a good manager so I’m excited to play for him.”

Watts will not be the only Saints youngster who seeks to get Crawley up into the League Two playoffs this campaign, with full-back Will Ferry already at the club on loan.

Asked if he was happy to link up with his footballing pal, Watts added: “Yeah exactly.

“Fez is a good guy and I’m glad he’s here so I’m not the only Saints boy here.”