It had been reported that Southampton were one of three Premier League clubs interested in Cabral during the summer transfer window, alongside both West Ham and Fulham, per Record. However, a move for the 22-year-old never materialised, meaning he will spend at least the first half of the campaign in Portugal.
Major contract upgrade could see Southampton priced out
It was reported that Southampton’s interest in Cabral over the summer had got to the stage where negotiations between themselves and Sporting CP were well underway, per Record. However, in the end the move did not happen, and Ralph Hasenhuttl instead brought Theo Walcott back to the club on loan from Everton.
Sporting are now intent on ensuring that they avoid any more speculation over Cabral’s future in January by entering into talks over a new and improved contract for the 22-year-old. The Lisbon club are preparing to increase his buyout clause from €60m (£54.1m) to €100m (£90.2m) in a bold move to warn off potential suitors, per O Jogo.
Southampton have options in the wide positions now, having brought in Walcott for the season. Hasenhuttl has also revealed that the Saints are considering bringing Mohamed Elyounoussi back into the fold next summer when he returns from his loan with Celtic, which could mean Southampton choose not to go back in for Cabral.
Cabral would have been very exciting Saints addition
Cabral enjoyed an encouraging campaign with Sporting CP in 2019/20, with the winger registering six goals and two assists in his 16 league appearances (Sofascore). He also averaged 2.4 shots, 1.3 key passes and completed 2.3 successful dribbles per match (Sofascore). Those are impressive stats for a 22-year-old and illustrate the potential he has to develop into an excellent attacking wide player.
The 22-year-old’s form unsurprisingly attracted interest and he would have been an ideal potential signing for the Saints. However, were he to sign a new deal with a £90.2m buyout clause, that could make it very difficult for Southampton to reach a deal which is acceptable for the Portuguese side – so it seems if this new deal is signed, they may have to move onto other targets
In other news, find out which ‘physical’ Southampton starlet has been touted for a major role by Hasenhuttl by clicking here.
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