According to a recent report from The Sun, James Ward-Prowse has been linked with a £10 million move away from Southampton. The 23-year-old has come up through the ranks at St Mary’s and has since gone on to make 205 appearances for the Premier League outfit, although he wasn’t always a regular starter in the most recent campaign.
And Javi Gracia’s Watford are reportedly seeking to take advantage by launching a £10 million move for the midfielder, and Mark Hughes’ Saints, were they to accept the deal, should seek to use that money to fund a much-needed move for Sporting Lisbon hotshot Bas Dost.
Ultimately, while several Saints fans would love to retain Ward-Prowse beyond Thursday’s 5pm deadline, the one-time England international only managed 20 starts in the Premier League last term, and only has 12 goals and 28 assists to show for his long stint on the South Coast.
Yes, there is no doubt that the midfielder has bags of potential and could be a huge asset to manager Hughes going forward, but Southampton are in dire need of striking reinforcements having netted just 37 goals in the top-flight last season – Charlie Austin, who appeared just 24 times, finished as their top goal-scorer with seven.
And having done some shrewd business to bolster other areas of the squad in need of strengthening, not least in bringing in Mohamed Elyounoussi and Jannik Vestergaard in midfield and defence respectively, Hughes must seek to end the window on a high by landing a prolific goal-scorer – Dost ticks that box.
The Netherlands international has been scoring goals for fun for Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon since making the move there back in 2016, with the 29-year-old having netted a staggering 70 goals in just 90 appearances for the club, 34 of which coming in all competitions last season.
Quite simply, those figures are sensational and certainly wouldn’t go amiss in a Southampton side that, despite scoring the seventh fewest amount goals in the league last season, actually created more chances than 12 other teams – only the top six and Bournemouth created more.
Thus, it’s clear that the South Coast outfit are crying out for someone to come in and put those chances away on a regular basis. When Charlie Austin is fit, he invariably scores. But his injury record is always a cause for concern.
Dost initially cancelled his contract at Sporting earlier this summer following an attack by supporters at the club’s training ground, yet he has since penned new terms to remain at the club – yet that shouldn’t deter Southampton from a move in the last knockings of the window given their glaring need for a forward.
And were they to cash in and receive £10 million for Ward-Prowse, they must use that money to fund a much-needed move for the Dutch hotshot.
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