The lowdown: Hot prospect
And the 23-year-old former England youth international has impressed during the 2021/22 Championship campaign, drawing links with a move to Leeds United back in March.
Now, it appears as though a number of other Premier League suitors have emerged and the Saints are in the midst of a hotly contested race…
The latest: Saints make contact
As per Wales Online, Southampton, Wolves and Crystal Palace have all ‘shown an interest’ in signing Downes this summer.
It’s claimed that the Saints, as well as the fellow top-flight suitors, have all made ‘tentative enquiries’ regarding the six-cap England Under 20 starlet.
The report states that Swansea would expect to receive bids in the region of £11-12million for the man once branded ‘tenacious’ by writer Stuart Watson owing to a never diminishing work ethic.
The verdict: Smart move
Predominantly operating as a defensive midfielder, last term Downes scored once and provided two assists in 39 appearances across all competitions for the Welsh outfit.
Overall the Englishman earned an impressive 6.83 Sofascore rating whilst winning 4.0 duels, making 1.1 interceptions and 1.1 clearances on average per league outing, ending the season with the sixth-most passes per game in the second tier (61.7) and an outstanding 93 per cent passing accuracy – better than Saints’ talisman James Ward Prowse’s 86 per cent Premier League figure.
Also capable of playing at centre-back, in more advanced positions and in wide areas, signing Downes would be a superb piece of business from the St Mary’s hierarchy, nabbing a young player equally as comfortable in possession as he is breaking up opposition attacks.
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