Southampton have done brilliantly to cultivate one of England’s more underrated central midfielders in recent years, with James Ward-Prowse earning huge plaudits for his dependability and free-kick prowess.
However, they could be set to add another reliable set of legs beside him, which could prove to be a stroke of genius by Ralph Hasenhuttl.
Perhaps a move slightly further south may revitalise a career that promised so much, and even propel Ward-Prowse to the next level too.
Last season Winks only managed 19 appearances for Spurs and was used even more sparingly once Antonio Conte came in.
Having now been deemed surplus to requirements by the Italian, a move down the table could relieve some pressure and allow him to play the football he once did earlier on in his career.
The England international did manage a respectable SofaScore rating of 6.84 across his few appearances, suggesting that a consistent performer still lurks beneath the surface of this wantaway maestro.
In fact, journalist Adam Crafton labelled him “remarkable” after he impressed against Real Madrid after a stint out of the team. He showed back then that even without minutes his quality did not diminish, so there’s no reason to believe this time would be any different.
He did also rank in the 98th percentile for progressive passes per 90, which suggests that alongside Ward-Prowse, Winks could perhaps operate from slightly deeper and maintain the tempo of the Saints side.
This would allow the Southampton midfielder to push forward and better utilise his creative attributes, as he ranked in the 90th percentile for shot-creating actions per 90.
Reportedly available for just £25m, it is suggested that all Winks needs to thrive is a run in a team and a slice of faith from his manager. Spurs have been through multiple managers in recent years, and this may have contributed to his reduction in play time.
If Southampton are to take that chance, it could not only help provide better service to their forwards but give their prized asset more freedom to express himself in attacking situations. This could prove invaluable for Hasenhuttl as they also grow closer to signing Sekou Mara from Bordeaux.
This is set to be an exciting few weeks for the St Mary’s outfit based on that.