Southampton have been linked with both Souleyman Doumbia and Brandon Williams recently but who would be the better addition to Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side this summer?
According to Football Insider, Southampton are considering a move for the 24-year-old Angers SCO left-back this summer as they look to replace Ryan Bertrand, who is looking increasingly likely to leave when his contract at St Mary’s expires.
The 24-year-old has been a regular with the Ligue 1 side this season following his arrival from Stade Rennais in the summer, making 26 appearances in the French top-flight, for which he has averaged a solid, if unspectacular, 6.63 rating for his performances.
The Ivory Coast international is contracted until 2023 but is valued at just £2.25m by Transfermarkt which suggests that he would be a relatively cheap option for the Saints this summer.
Southampton were heavily linked with a move for Williams in the January transfer window and although that loan deal fell through, according to The Athletic, they will return for him this summer.
The 20-year-old has struggled for regular game time at Manchester United this season as a result of Luke Shaw’s impressive run of form, whilst Alex Telles’ summer arrival also saw the “brave” academy graduate slip down the pecking order in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
In the 2019/20 season, however, Williams was a regular for United in the Europa League and impressed across his eight appearances, averaging a 7.19 rating for his performances.
Whilst Williams might arrive on an initial loan deal, and would likely prove to be a more expensive option for Southampton should they seek a permanent deal, he seems like the better of the two options.
He can play as both a left-back and as a right-back, which means he could provide back-up on the right-hand side for Kyle Walker-Peters, whilst the fact that he is English also helps with Premier League registration rules.
A loan deal for Williams would be a lot less risky too, as he if ends up struggling at St Mary’s then the Saints would have no obligation to buy him, whereas Doumbia could prove to be a flop which would then have to be sold on in the future for a loss.
Therefore, Martin Semmens should forget about signing Doumbia this summer and instead focus on signing Williams on loan for Hasenhuttl’s side ahead of next season.