Published On: Thu, Aug 25th, 2016

Report: Southampton close to €25M deal for Lille's Boufal

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Jean-Paul Pelissier / Reuters

To see a list of completed deals in the summer window thus far, visit theScore’s Premier League transfer tracker.

Southampton is nearing a €25-million (£21.2-million) deal to bring Lille OSC‘s enterprising midfielder Sofiane Boufal to St Mary’s, according to the Guardian’s Ed Aarons.

The 22-year-old has previously interested Tottenham Hotspur, but is now apparently on the Saints’ radar as they look to address the attacking dearth left by the sales of Sadio Mane and Graziano Pelle.

Related – Last-minute shopping: What each club needs 1 week from deadline day

Aarons notes that Watford and Chelsea have also tracked Boufal’s signature, with Lille said to be valuing the French-born Moroccan international at an initial fee of €20 million (£17 million) before various add-ons.

Boufal only switched from Angers to Lille in January 2015, but his 11 goals and four assists in 27 Ligue 1 starts last season has unsurprisingly alerted numerous European outfits. His fleet-footed dribbles and ability to ping shots from distance would enhance most Premier League sides, but his strength may need work to acclimatise in the English game.

In light of recent departures, Southampton has already strengthened with the addition of Nathan Redmond, but the former Norwich City man is sharing much of the wing play with Dusan Tadic, prompting French manager Claude Puel to seek greater depth from his homeland.

The Saints have just one point to show for their opening two Premier League outings, and face a visit from relegation-candidate Sunderland on Saturday.

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