A major development has emerged in the race to sign central midfielder Billy Gilmour, one that will impact Southampton’s chances of landing him this summer.
According to The Guardian, Norwich City are closing in on a deal to sign Southampton target Billy Gilmour on loan from Chelsea. Thomas Tuchel has given the green light for Gilmour to depart Stamford Bridge and Chelsea are willing to send the Scottish international to Norwich on a season-long loan.
The Evening Standard have claimed that Southampton attempted to sign Gilmour in January, only for Chelsea to rebuff their efforts. Southampton have continued to track the central midfielder ahead of this summer, but now look set to miss out on a deal to newly-promoted Norwich.
“I think he’s pretty settled at Chelsea. Fabulous little player but there’s been no contact.”
Southampton fans will be gutted by this news as the club could be about to miss out on what could have been a great move for Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side.
Gilmour is a talented young midfielder and Martin Semmens could be missing a trick by allowing Norwich to swoop in and secure a deal to bring him in on loan. It could be a low-cost, exciting, transfer for Norwich and one that Southampton fans may be envious of.
The 20-year-old has burst onto the scene with Chelsea and Scotland over the past 18 months or so. He has an outstanding record of winning Man of the Match awards, with the midfielder winning the award on his Premier League, FA Cup and European Championships debuts for Chelsea and Scotland respectively. This shows that he has the talent to stand out at the top level, suggesting that he could be ready to join a Premier League club on loan and play regular football next season to further his development.
Hasenhuttl’s squad is bereft of options in central midfield. James Ward-Prowse, Ibrahima Diallo and Oriol Romeu are the club’s only natural central midfielders, with the latter two both being defensive-minded. The £43k-per-week starlet, Gilmour, could have filled a gap within Southampton’s squad in that regard. He could have provided much-needed competition in midfield and offered Hasenhuttl a new option to partner Ward-Prowse in the Premier League, which is why fans will be frustrated that Semmens has not been able to oust Norwich to snap him up.