This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
According to Sky Sports’ Transfer Centre (June 27, 3:34pm), Southampton striker Charlie Austin has been the subject of interest from Premier League rivals Sheffield United, and if the Saints board can sell him for the reported £10m asking price they would deserve all of the praise they get.
Well, Ralph Hasenhuttl has made no secret of the fact that the centre-forward can leave St Mary’s if the right deal can be found for all parties, and Sky Sports’ Transfer Centre (June 27, 3:34pm) report that the Blades could be keen on bringing the 29-year-old north to boost their squad ahead of their top flight return.
However, the report says that the south coast outfit want in the region of £10m for the former Queens Park Rangers man, who cost them £4m when he arrived from Loftus Road back in January 2016 and has one year remaining on his contract.
Austin found first-team minutes hard to come by last term – especially under Hasenhuttl from December onwards as he often found himself behind the likes of Nathan Redmond, Shane Long and Danny Ings in the pecking order – netting twice in 20 Premier League outings.
Southampton’s hierarchy have had an unstable few years with the managerial appointments of Claude Puel, Mauricio Pellegrino and Mark Hughes failing to work out, while big-money signings such as Wesley Hoedt, Guido Carrillo, Sofiane Boufal and Moi Elyounoussi have ultimately flopped – the former three were sent out on loan during the 2018/19 campaign, while the latter only played 791 Premier League minutes for the south coast side.
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Bringing in Hasenhuttl has got Saints back on the right track, and if the club – who recently confirmed the new structure of their board following the departures of Les Reed and Ralph Krueger in recent months – can bring in £10m for Austin, they would deserve all of the plaudits they can get.
To make a significant profit on a player who has largely failed to deliver at St Mary’s – 20 goals in 81 appearances in all competitions certainly isn’t the best record for a striker – and has had his fair share of injury issues would be more than praiseworthy and further continue the board’s steps towards redemption.