Southampton’s hopes of signing Blackburn Rovers striker Adam Armstrong this summer have been handed a boost after Watford saw their latest bid rejected.
Southampton have been heavily linked with a move for the 24-year-old striker throughout the summer window thus far and have reportedly seen two of their own bids rejected, one of which included Michael Obafemi as part of a proposed swap deal.
However, Watford are also seemingly keen on adding the former Newcastle United man to their squad following their promotion back to the top flight and they recently saw a bid of £15m plus Andre Gray rejected by Tony Mowbray’s side.
The Sun claimed that, due to Newcastle having a 40% sell-on clause, Blackburn are looking for £25m to sell their star striker this summer, despite him having less than 12 months left on his contract at Ewood Park.
The Lancashire club are playing a risky game and, if they cannot sell him this summer, they risk losing him for nothing at the end of the 2021/22 season, so perhaps they will eventually lower their asking price.
Given that Ralph Hasenhuttl has regularly suggested that Southampton will target players around the £10m mark this summer, it seems unlikely that the Saints board would sanction a £25m move for Armstrong, especially when he has minimal top-flight experience.
However, the former England under-21 international has been “brilliant” for Blackburn in recent years, hitting 28 goals in the Championship last season alone. He could be an excellent addition to Hasenhuttl’s squad for the future, especially if Danny Ings leaves either this summer or next following the news that he has rejected a new deal with the Saints.
Therefore, following the news that Watford have had a bid rejected, Saints vice-chairman Martin Semmens should really look to accelerate a potential deal with Blackburn and seek to negotiate the price down, or else they risk losing out on one of their top targets for the summer.