Southampton were heavily linked with Teun Koopmeiners in 2020, and after he completed a move to Atalanta in the transfer window, you’d have to feel that the Saints missed out on a player who would’ve been ideal in Ralph Hasenhuttl’s squad.
Southampton reportedly bid around €16m (£14m) for the Dutch midfielder last summer but were unsuccessful in their attempts to bring him to St Mary’s, as he remained with AZ Alkmaar for the 2020/21 campaign.
However, he completed a move to Atalanta late in the summer transfer window in a deal reportedly worth €12m (£10.3m), which suggests that he could’ve been a bargain option for the Saints.
The 23-year-old midfielder certainly seems to fit Southampton’s transfer model as he is a young midfielder who would’ve cost just over £10m, which was the budget Ralph Hasenhuttl set for new signings ahead of the transfer window.
The Austrian also suggested in the transfer window that he was looking for a player who could play as a centre-back or a ‘number six’, and Koopmeiners has been a regular in both of those positions in his career thus far, so he would’ve been ideal at St Mary’s.
Even following the signing of Lyanco from Torino, it was still suggested that Hasenhuttl wanted more cover for Oriol Romeu and Ibrahima Diallo in the defensive midfield position, so a late move for Koopmeiners would have made a lot of sense.
Despite predominantly featuring as a defensive midfielder, the Dutchman was in sensational form for AZ Alkmaar last season, contributing 15 goals and five assists in 31 Eredivisie appearances and averaging a superb 7.31 rating from WhoScored for his performances.
If the 23-year-old is able to replicate those sorts of performances for Atalanta in Serie A this season, then you’d have to feel that Southampton will have made a big mistake in not reigniting their interest in Koopmeiners this summer.