Burley's hands-off warning

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George Burley has issued another hands-off warning to clubs eyeing Southampton's young talent ahead of the transfer window reopening in January.

Teenage left-back Gareth Bale's impressive performances have written column inches, with reports linking the player to any number of Premiership sides.

Meanwhile, fellow defender Chris Baird is a reported target of Blackburn.

Burley said: "Gareth is improving week by week and clearly has a big future in the game. Even in the last couple of months he has got stronger and he is a real threat going forward.

"But he still has a lot to learn. He is not the finished article yet and has got to keep improving.

"I am not worried about the transfer window. He has a year and a half on his contract and he will certainly be here for that."

Baird signed a new three-year deal in the summer and Burley told the club's official website: "(Blackburn) have not contacted us and if they did we would not find it hard to refuse. We do not need, or want, to sell him."

Baird's agent Gary Williams has also played down speculation linking the Northern Ireland international with a move away.

"Chris is very happy with the way things are going at Southampton," Williams told skysports.com.