Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhüttl has confirmed Pierre-Emile Højbjerg has been stripped of the captaincy at St Mary’s after the midfielder decided against signing an extension.

The Denmark international’s current deal with the Saints is until next season and Ekstra Bladet reported on Thursday that Tottenham Hotspur are ‘certain’ to make a move for him this summer.

BT’s football editor Michel Wikkelsø Davidsen has backed the coach’s decision to take the armband away from the 24-year-old and hand it over to James Ward-Prowse.

He stressed it would have looked ‘silly’ if Southampton would have retained the former Bayern Munich man as their captain.

The journalist is also of the belief Højbjerg has put pressure on himself to be sold and he could ‘already be gone’ this summer.

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It’s not clear if Spurs will make an approach for Højbjerg this summer, but Michel Wikkelsø Davidsen believes a move to the north London club would be a ‘natural step’ for the player.

“We are looking at Tottenham, because that’s where the rumours have been. And when you are in the Premier League, have been a leader and have been considered a profile, then the next natural step is to go to a slightly bigger Premier League club,” he said.

“It’s going to be top of the Premier League, but below [the likes of] Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool.

“Below that we have a layer where he could go and I think Tottenham sound like the most interesting thing, in that the interest is mutual. It smells like Tottenham and it could be an insanely good move for him.”

Should Højbjerg fail to find a club of his choice this summer, Michel Wikkelsø Davidsen stressed he could live a similar fate as the one Christian Eriksen experienced in his final months at Tottenham.

“He can certainly risk fooling himself on this one. We’ve seen it before with Christian Eriksen,” the football editor stressed.