We already know David Moyes will be on the hunt for a new left-back in the summer. He’s attempted to sign Real Madrid’s Fabio Coentrao in both of his transfer windows at Manchester United to no avail, and Patrice Evra’s contract is set to expire in the summer.
He may have another go for the Portugal international at the end of the season, but the other standout option remains Southampton prodigy Luke Shaw.
Despite featuring just once at senior level for the Saints previously – a 15 minute FA Cup stint – the 18 year-old debuted upon the south coast outfit’s Premier League ascension in 2012. He’s since racked up 46 appearances in the top flight, and has never looked out of his depth.
Now the resident No.3 at St. Mary’s, Shaw has gone from strength to strength, called up to the England U21s and tipped by the tabloids to become the world’s first £30million full-back.
Possessing a mixture of attacking verve and defensive nous, the Saints starlet decisively belongs to the growing trend of modern full-back, capable of contributing heavily at both ends of the pitch and possessing the pace and stamina to do so for a full ninety minutes.
Many have compared the Junior Lion to fellow Southampton academy product Gareth Bale in style. A transition into a more attacking role in his later career seems unlikely, but none the less, it’s a great testament to Shaw’s elite athleticism and technical talent.
Maurico Pochettino has claimed the sought-after defender ‘isn’t for sale at any price’, but in transfer terms, that means Southampton will only sell for an outrageous offer. Once again, the £30million benchmark comes to mind.
But it’s not only Manchester United who are hot on Shaw’s heels. As with Patrice Evra, Chelsea view the home-grown full-back as the ideal successor to Ashley Cole, and Manchester City also want to secure a long-term No.3 in the summer, with Aleksander Kolorov and Gael Clichy being rather ordinary defenders.
Therefore, a Mexican transfer stand-off for the youngster’s signature will undoubtedly ensue.