Southampton have missed out on promising English attacking midfielder James Maddison with Leicester City confirming the signing of the 21-year-old from Norwich City on a five-year deal.
There is no doubting Maddison’s potential, and he certainly would’ve added to an already talented Southampton squad.
But at a reported £22m, Southampton are better off using that sort of money to invest in a centre-forward. While Maddison’s Championship stats were impressive this season, the Saints already have creative attackers like Dusan Tadic, Nathan Redmond and Sofiane Boufal, who just need a bit more freedom on the pitch to truly express themselves.
Additionally, one of Southampton’s strongest areas is midfield. Oriol Romeu, Mario Lemina, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg and James Ward-Prowse are easily some of the best midfielders in the Premier League outside the top six.
The addition of Maddison to the team would’ve made less space available in either midfield or attack depending on manager Mark Hughes’ system, making any of the above unnecessarily redundant.
With Charlie Austin’s injury record and Manolo Gabbiadini struggles in front of goal, £22m would’ve been a waste on a creative player like Maddison. Now that Maddison has joined Leicester, Hughes should use the money that would’ve been spent on the ex-Norwich player and go all out for a quality centre-forward.
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