Southampton's Fraser Forster, James Ward-Prowse sign new contracts

Fraser Forster and James Ward-Prowse have signed new long-term contracts at Southampton.

England goalkeeper Forster, 28, has committed his future for five years while England under-21 captain Ward-Prowse, 21, has signed a new six-year deal.

Forster, who joined from Celtic in the summer of 2014, was recently linked with a move to Chelsea after returning from a knee injury that left him sidelined for nearly 10 months.

Southampton executive director of football Les Reed said on the club's official website: "Since his arrival in 2014, Fraser has proved himself as one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League, and has been an integral part of the club's success over the last two seasons.

"The way in which Fraser returned from his long-term injury earlier this season further highlighted his quality, as he wrote his name into the club's record books.

"At 28, Fraser will only get better and we firmly believe he will be a key factor in the club's future success and of the national team's plans for many years to come. We're delighted he sees his long-term future with Southampton and that we share the same ambitions."

Ward-Prowse, meanwhile, emerged through the Southampton academy and the midfielder has established himself as an important player in Ronald Koeman's side, making 38 appearances in all competitions so far this season.

Reed said: "We've been delighted with the way in which James has continued to develop over the course of the last season, becoming a key member of Ronald's first team and playing an important part in another excellent season for the club.

"Now captain of England Under-21s, James continues to go from strength to strength, and we're very pleased that he sees Southampton as the best place to achieve his ambitions.

"James is an excellent example of the club's philosophy to bring players through from the Academy into the first team, he is the perfect role model for our young Academy players and he will certainly be an important part of the club for many years to come."

Ward-Prowse told Southampton's YouTube channel: "I'm delighted. When I knew I had the chance to extend my stay here it was a no-brainer for me.

"It's pleasing that the club have shown that they have faith in me to extend my stay and I want to repay the faith to the club for putting their time and effort into making me the player I am today."

Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk, who joined from Celtic last year, also recently signed a new six-year contract.