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Southampton: Saints want Saliba

An update has emerged on Arsenal’s William Saliba, regarding Southampton’s interest in his services.

What’s the talk?

According to Foot Mercato, Southampton and Newcastle are both eyeing up a deal to take Saliba on loan from Arsenal this summer. Arsenal are willing to send Saliba back out on loan following his spell at OGC Nice in Ligue 1 last season.

London have reported that Arsenal’s pursuit of Brighton centre-back Ben White could even allow the Gunners to sell Saliba on a permanent basis. Arsenal are closing in on a deal for White and if they land the England international, it could lead to Saliba being available for a permanent deal.

Would Saliba be a good signing?

Yes

Yes

No

No

Adrian Ursea, his coach at Nice, hailed Saliba as a leader despite his young age. He told BeIN Sports, as transcribed by Planet Football:

“You can see he has character and above all, he reassures the others. He’s not vocal, but he’s a leader in his own way.

“To see you a young lad who isn’t even 20 yet playing with such assurance against strikers like Wissam Ben Yedder and Kevin Volland, it really is quite amazing.

“He also gives off a calm air that the team needs. I’m not interested in age. The only question about a rookie is whether he’s a good player or not.”

Another one of his former coaches, Fabio Frasconi, likened him to Real Madrid and France centre-back Raphael Varane. He said:

“William Saliba will go far, very far. He reminds me of Raphaël Varane.”

Fans would be buzzing

Southampton fans would be buzzing if the club can get a deal over the line for Saliba. The young centre-back is a talented prospect and could provide some much-needed quality competition for places in Ralph Hasenhuttl’s squad next season.

Mohamed Salisu has been mainly utilised at left-back by Hasenhuttl, leaving Jan Bednarek and Jannik Vestergaard to play 36 and 30 Premier League game respectively at centre-back. This means that there could be scope for a new addition to come in and push the established duo.

Saliba could be the player who comes in and does just that. The 20-year-old has proven himself in France with St Ettiene and Nice, averaging a career WhoScored rating of 6.75 in 50 appearances for the two French clubs. This shows that he is good enough at Ligue 1 level, suggesting that he could be able to make the step up to the Premier League with Southampton. Therefore, he could be a shrewd addition to Southampton’s squad and provide valuable competition for Hasenhuttl’s other centre-backs.

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The £36k-per-week beast also has the potential to develop further as he only turned 20 in March. Hasenhuttl could have the chance to coach him into becoming a better centre-back over the course of the season if he joins on loan.

Southampton fans will be buzzing if Saliba arrives at St. Mary’s as they could have the chance to watch him flourish whilst playing at the club next season.

AND in other news, Major development emerges on “fabulous” £43k-p/w starlet, Saints fans will be gutted…

Article title: Southampton: Saints want Saliba

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