Despite having an average squad age of 26, Southampton do have a number of players in their side in and around the age of 30.
One player that fits this criteria is 30-year-old Oriol Romeu, who has managed to rack up a total of 221 appearances for the Saints across all competitions since joining the club back in the 2015 summer transfer window from fellow Premier League club Chelsea.
With the Spaniard’s current contract set to run out in the summer of 2023, we feel that the Saints could possibly already have their ideal replacement for Romeu if he were to leave the club when his deal expires.
18-year-old central-midfielder Kgagelo Chauke made his senior debut for the Saints back in January during the club’s 2-0 win over Shrewsbury Town in the FA Cup.
As well as this, Chauke, who Hasenhuttl apparently “really likes” according to journalist Joe Crann, has nine appearances for Southampton’s U18 side and 29 appearances for their B team under his belt as well.
In two appearances for Southampton B in the Football League Trophy so far this season against Leyton Orient and Charlton Athletic, Chauke managed to earn himself a match rating of 7/10 for both performances according to SofaScore, which just goes to show he can play well against senior opposition when given the chance.
In addition to this, the midfielder has managed to make two interceptions per game in those two cup matches and 3.5 tackles per game as well, showing how much of a defensive unit he can be in the team from midfield.
Taking this into account, and the fact that Romeu has made more tackles per game (3) than any other Saints player in the Premier League this season and the joint-second highest number of interceptions per game (1.6), this shows how Chauke could potentially be a good future replacement for the Spaniard if he leaves the club in the near future based on his defensive capabilities.
Moving forward, if Chauke keeps playing well for Southampton’s youth team and makes the most out of any other chance he may get to play in the senior side, we feel he could well go on to be a regular first team player for the club in the next few years.