Spurs target set for PL opener despite not being 'mentally ready' last week

Arsenal v Southampton 2012 Pregame with Schneiderlin

Morgan Schneiderlin has long been linked to Tottenham, but could be set to return to the Southampton team this weekend.

Southampton manager Ronaldo Koeman has confirmed that Tottenham linked midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin is back and available for the club's opening Premier League game at Liverpool.

The Frenchman sat out the Saints' final preseason fixture last weekend having claimed he was "not mentally or physically ready" to return to football at St Mary's.

But he has trained well this week according to the Dutchman, and could make an appearance at Anfield if selected.

"He showed me that he is ready to play in the last week of training," Koeman told BBC Sport.

"He had a good week of training after having the weekend off.

"I expect him to stay because he is not for sale," the former Feyenoord boss said when queried on the player's future.

Spurs have been closely linked to the France international over the summer, with Southampton's former manager Mauricio Pochettino taking over at White Hart Lane after Tim Sherwood left in May.

Though Saints chairman Ralph Krueger has stated Schneiderlin will not be sold before the start of the season, the player continues to be linked with a switch to North London. 

Earlier this week Schneiderlin claimed to have had a gentlemen's agreement to be allowed to move this summer.

Pochettino refused to discuss the player when queried in yesterday's press conference, saying he didn't wish to talk about players from other clubs.

It will be interesting to see what kind of reception Schneiderlin gets from the Southampton fans, after seemingly pushed hard for a move to join up with his former boss at Spurs.

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