Southampton eyeing Boakye & Pepe suggests they are ready to replace Pelle & Mane

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According to reports in The Sun, Southampton manager Mark Hughes is keeping tabs on Jiangsu Suning striker Richmond Boakye and Lille winger Nicolas Pepe with a view to making a move for both players.

What’s the word, then?

Well, despite the bulk of Saints’ problems so far this season looking to be in their defence – as shown by the three avoidable goals they conceded in the 3-0 defeat against Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday – The Sun reports that Hughes wants to strengthen his team’s attack.

Despite the plethora of striker and general attacking options available for the south coast outfit, they have netted just six times in their opening six Premier League matches so far this term, and the Welshman obviously feels that he needs to bring in more firepower even though he signed Stuart Armstrong, Danny Ings and Mo Elyounoussi during the summer.

The Sun says that a St Mary’s scout watched Boakye – currently back on loan at former club Red Star Belgrade – during the 1-1 draw with Partizan at the weekend, while Hughes is also taking a look at Pepe.

Should they sign them?

While their defence may well be their main issue, they still probably should.

Given Boakye has scored 41 goals in 52 games for Red Star and Pepe has 18 goals and a further eight assists in 44 appearances for Lille in all competitions, it shows that the pair would add some much-needed quality in the final third for Southampton.

Saints have never really recovered – in terms of their attack – from the departures of Graziano Pelle and Sadio Mane in the summer of 2016 with no suitable replacements found, but the latest links suggest that vice-chairman Les Reed may be about to do what he should have done back then by signing the duo.