Southampton have reportedly registered their interest in Everton prodigy Thierry Small although they face intense competition from Premier League clubs.
According to Football Insider, Southampton have launched a move to sign Everton youngster Thierry Small despite facing tough competition for the left-back. The Toffees are resigned to losing the promising academy graduate after contract talks stalled with the teenager weeks ago.
Everton could lose one of their most promising stars from the academy to a Premier League rival in the coming days. Thierry Small, a left-back by trade, has been linked with some of the biggest clubs in England and Europe. While new Brexit rules affect transfers of players under 18, Small is likely to join an English side.
The promising left-back turned 17 earlier this month, making him eligible for a pro-contract. Everton have already tabled their offer, which they feel is generous enough for the player to remain. However, those talks have seemingly stalled, paving the way for Premier League sides to make their pitch towards the player.
Meanwhile, the Premier League granted Small permission to hold talks with other clubs. The likes of Manchester United and Arsenal are showing genuine interest, and now Southampton have entered the race. The report suggests Everton have confirmed the Saints’ approach, making them the first side to formally open talks.
Southampton recently lost Ryan Bertrand to Leicester City and have a slot open for a new player at left-back, despite having signed Romain Perraud. They also signed Tino Livramento from Chelsea earlier in the window and could bring another promising player to their ranks.
Southampton chief scout Martyn Glover is pushing for a move to happen after watching the player first-hand during his own time at Goodison Park two years ago.
Everton are expecting a compensation fee of around £5 million for their youngster. As for Small, a move to Southampton would make more sense for his development than to one of the big clubs such as Manchester United or Arsenal.
It would also represent a huge loss for Everton, who were counting on Small as their future left-back. The youngster, who became their youngest ever first-team player when he came as a substitute during January’s FA Cup 4th round win, seems all set to depart. Whether it will be to Southampton or a different club remains to be seen.