SAINTS defender Duje Caleta-Car revealed his agent was called about a late move to Liverpool in January last year – but it did not materialise.

The 26-year-old arrived at St Mary’s on deadline day this summer, after years of being linked with a Premier League move.

Of the most intense reports, Liverpool were credited with interest as they wrestled an injury crisis in defence at the start of 2021.

Croatian international Caleta-Car has now opened up on that situation, although admitting “I don’t want to go into what happened".

He said: “It happened really fast. You know, they get a lot of injured players - central defenders - so my agent called me and said to me Liverpool is there.

“They are something different and I wanted to join them because Liverpool is one of the biggest clubs in the world. But it didn’t happen.

“There was something between Marseille and Liverpool,” Caleta-Car explained. “But I don’t want to go into what happened.

“Now I’m here and really enjoying it here in England. We play against Liverpool now so it’ll be a good test.”

Liverpool eventually signed Preston North End defender Ben Davies, who departed Anfield permanently for Rangers this summer. 

Davies never played a game for the Reds as the likes of Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez recovered from their injuries.

Caleta-Car, who stayed at French Ligue 1 side Marseille, has played seven times for Saints since his summer arrival.

“We have really good central defenders. Armel (Bella-Kotchap), Lyanco, Sali (Mohammed Salisu) - we are all young and we can just improve and learn,” he added.

“So I knew I wouldn’t come into the team immediately. I didn't go through a preparation with Southampton. So it will be that I cannot expect that I'll start directly from the first game.

“But yeah, I waited for my chance and like I was training really, really hard to take my position. And now as I start to play I think I'm doing so far good, but I think I can do also better.”

The Croatia international is settling into life in England – only finding one issue!

“Just a problem for me, in the beginning, was the driving to the other side. Now it's okay and so far everything is good,” he laughed.

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