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Southampton missed out on Dan James

Southampton were briefly linked with a move for Dan James before he joined Leeds United this week, and the Welshman could’ve been a superb addition at St Mary’s.

What’s the word?

According to talkSPORT journalist Alex Crook, the Saints were tracking the 23-year-old’s situation at Manchester United, with the winger perhaps always likely to leave following the summer arrivals of Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo.

However, he eventually completed a £25m move to Leeds United, with Marcelo Bielsa’s side clearly desperate to bring him in after seeing a 2019 move for him collapse during his time with Swansea City.

Would James have been a good signing for Southampton?

Although £25m would have been well over the budget that Ralph Hasenhuttl set for new signings at Southampton this summer, there seems little doubt that James would have offered something very different at St Mary’s.

The Austrian does have pacy options up front in Che Adams, Adam Armstrong and Nathan Tella, but so far this season Theo Walcott, Moussa Djenepo and Mohammed Elyounoussi have been the starters on the wing, none of whom possess the raw pace of James.

During his time with Manchester United, the 23-year-old contributed nine goals and nine assists in 74 appearances, including a stunning goal at St Mary’s in a 1-1 draw in 2019.

Despite featuring just 15 times in the Premier League last season, the Wales international still contributed three goals, which is more than the likes of Djenepo and Redmond managed for the Saints in the top flight in 29 and 27 appearances respectively.

The young winger was also in impressive form for Wales at the European Championship earlier this summer, averaging a solid 6.88 rating from WhoScored for his performances as Rob Page’s side reached the round of 16.

James’ pace alone could have offered Southampton a serious counterattacking threat down the wings, rather than the constant dribbling with no end product that Saints fans often endure from Redmond and Djenepo, as indicated by their aforementioned figures from last season.

Therefore, whilst he would’ve been an expensive option, Southampton will perhaps regret not pursuing James further in the summer transfer window.

In other news… Bullet dodged: Southampton escaped deadline day disaster with £16.2m-rated beast

Article title: Southampton missed out on Dan James

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