So far this season, Southampton have managed to concede ten goals in their opening seven Premier League games of the season.
It now appears that the Saints are looking to try and fix their defensive frailties by adding a new goalkeeper to their squad.
It has recently been reported by The Sun that Southampton have joined fellow Premier League clubs Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United in the race to sign West Bromwich Albion goalkeeper Sam Johnstone.
It has also been claimed that Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side would be willing to pay a fee for Johnstone in the upcoming January transfer window rather than wait until the summer when the shot-stopper would be available on a free transfer if he doesn’t sign a new contract at The Hawthorns.
Since joining the Baggies back in the 2018 summer transfer window from Manchester United, Johnstone, who is currently valued at £7.2 million according to Transfermarkt, has made 141 appearances for West Brom across all competitions where he has managed to keep 34 clean sheets in the process.
So far this season, the 28-year-old, who was described as an “important” player for the Baggies by their former manager Sam Allardyce has played in all but one of West Brom’s 11 Championship games so far this season, conceding just seven goals and keeping four clean sheets.
Given the number of goals Southampton have already conceded in the league, it’s understandable why they would be open to recruiting Johnstone in January rather than waiting to potentially get him on a free transfer in the summer. By that time, they may well have been relegated to the Championship if their poor form continues.
With that in mind, Johnstone could be the difference between staying in the division and ending up in the second tier of English football.
As well as this, the fact that Southampton’s current goalkeepers Alex McCarthy (31) and Fraser Forster (33) are both over the age of 30, we feel that the Baggies stopper could definitely be the club’s first-choice goalkeeper for the next few years.
Furthermore, Johnstone managed to keep a clean sheet in England’s latest match in their 5-0 win over Andorra, even providing the assist for Jack Grealish’s goal that came straight from the goalkeeper’s throw out of his penalty box.
Although he wasn’t able to prevent Albion from going down last term, he still ended the season as the goalkeeper with the most saves (161). That proves just how reliable he is at the bottom end of the pitch.
Taking all of this into account, we feel that Southampton should definitely make a move for the goalkeeper as he definitely has the ability to help Southampton strengthen their defence and help them stop conceding so many goals. That would be a major boost for their season, potentially making him a new club hero at St. Mary’s if he helps them avoid relegation.