An update has emerged on Southampton target Junior Firpo, regarding Leeds’ interest in his services.
According to Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo, Leeds United have joined Southampton in the race to land Barcelona left-back Junior Firpo. The defender is looking to leave the Catalan giants in the coming months and does not want to join another side in La Liga.
The report claims Southampton and West Ham are also interested in Firpo, whilst Italian sides AC Milan and Napoli are said to be keen. Barcelona are open to either a permanent deal or a loan with an option to buy at the end of the season.
Southampton CEO Martin Semmens must now act swiftly in order to stand a chance of landing the Spaniard this summer.
With a host of sides in England and Italy competing for his signature it could be difficult for the Saints to to snap him up, which is why Semmens has to move quickly. If the Premier League chief can get in ahead of the other interested parties then he could be able to wrap up a deal before Leeds, West Ham or Napoli are able to prepare their respective offers.
A year ago, former Barcelona defender Eric Abidal said that the 24-year-old has the talent to become one of the best left-backs on the planet, highlighting the quality of player Southampton could potentially be signing ahead of next season.
“He’s a player with a lot of potential. He could be one of the best left-backs in the world. I always tell him that he must work hard and be aware of the (style of) play. He’s going to get better, for sure. It’s always difficult to get started at Barca.”
The Athletic have reported that Southampton are closing in on the signing of Romain Perraud from Brest in Ligue 1 and this should not have any impact on a deal for Firpo. Ralph Hasenhuttl wants to add at least two fullbacks to his squad and that opens the door to the Barcelona man arriving at St. Mary’s after Perraud to bolster the Austrian’s defensive options.
Therefore, Firpo could be a much-needed signing for the south coast outfit. the £105k-per-week beast has experience playing in La Liga and the Champions League for Barcelona, whilst Hasenhuttl’s current back-up left-back Jake Vokins was only able to play four times in League One on loan to Sunderland in the second-half of last season.
This suggests that the top-flight side will be able to make a sizeable improvement to their squad by bringing the Barcelona fullback in to compete with Perraud for a spot in the team, whether that be on loan or on a permanent basis.