Southampton should sell Gabbiadini unless they plan to change formation

According to reports in Italian media outlet Corriere dello Sport, Southampton striker Manolo Gabbiadini could be set for a return to Serie A in the summer with Bologna with the club said to be in talks with Saints over a potential deal.

What’s the word, then?

Manolo Gabbiadini celebrates his goal against Burnley with Sofiane Boufal

Well, Corriere dello Sport says that Bologna were keen to sign the 26-year-old attacker during the January transfer window with their forward Simone Verdi being linked with Napoli, but neither move happened.

However, Corriere dello Sport says that the Serie A outfit are still interested in recruiting the Italy international this summer, and they are set to hold talks with his agent Silvio Pagliari in the next few weeks.

The report adds that Gabbiadini is keen to return to his home nation and wanted a move in January, but his €2.5m-a-year (£2.25m) contract would be out of their reach, while they say Saints could demand between €12-€15m (£10.7m-£13.4m) for his services.

How has Gabbiadini done this season?

The Italy international looked as though he was going to be a Southampton hero when he scored six goals in his first four appearances for the club just over a year ago, but he has only scored four times in 35 matches in all competitions since then.

The 26-year-old has fallen behind the likes of Charlie Austin, Shane Long and new boy Guido Carrillo in the pecking order at St Mary’s this term, making only one Premier League start since December 16.

Scoring a last-gasp equaliser in the 1-1 draw against Burnley last month wasn’t enough to see him get a starting spot against Stoke City last weekend – much to the bemusement of the fans – but the south coast outfit will still be hoping he can rediscover his previous goalscoring form in their battle to beat the drop.

What should Southampton do with Gabbiadini this summer?

For whatever reason things don’t appear to be working out for Gabbiadini, and he looks to be a player that is more suited to having another play up top alongside him.

Given that Saints favour a 4-2-3-1 system, they would be better off cashing in on the 26-year-old this summer in the interest of both parties, whether they stay up or are relegated to the Championship.

It remains to be seen whether a move to Bologna will happen however, given the financial implications of any deal.