The Chalkboard: Could recalled Alfie Jones provide surprise centre-back solution for Southampton?

Southampton have officially confirmed that defender Alfie Jones has been recalled from a loan spell with Scottish outfit St Mirren. The Premier League club have stated that the 21-year-old will “have the chance to impress the new boss having returned to the south coast.”

On the chalkboard

If Jones has been recalled in order to become a member of the first team then that is a bold call on the part of Ralph Hasenhuttl, but also one that ought to be applauded and that could ultimately pay off for the German coach. With transfer funds likely to be tight at St Mary’s Stadium, finding an internal solution to the Saints’ lack of defensive depth would be a smart move.

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Hasenhuttl certainly needs to address the lack of quality centre-back depth currently available to him. The Saints boss doesn’t seem to trust Wesley Hoedt either, which shrinks his options even further.

A smart, surprising solution

Jones is deserving of this chance to make a mark for his parent club. The Bristol-born defender has impressed in the Scottish Premiership this season, making fourteen appearances and scoring one goal.

With the January transfer window currently open, many Southampton fans may have been expecting Hasenhuttl to take to the market in order to bolster his defensive ranks. However, Jones could prove to be a surprise solution to this squad deficiency, freeing up the budget to be spent elsewhere.

If this is indeed Hasenhuttl’s plan then it is a gamble, but certainly one that deserves to pay off.

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