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Saints Announce Big New Signing
Friday, 29th Jun 2018 12:48

As has been speculated upon for the last few days, Saints have now announced the signing of Basel's Mohamed Elyounoussi, great news for Saints fans.

The revamp of Saints squad is now well under way and those cynics who had been suggesting that Saints would be selling players and not replacing them or buying cheaply have already had those opinions dashed with the arrival of Mohamed Elyounoussi.

The Morroccan born Norwegian International is able to play across a variety of attacking positions either through the centre or on either flank and offer Saints a lot of versatility in that although he could be said to be a direct replacement for Dusan Tadic, albeit a younger and more expensive one, that would be a little inaccurate as he could also be played as a central striker, giving Mark Hughes options that he did not have last season.

Saints have made a couple of good signings so far and now need to perhaps make two more assuming that no players that they really want to keep depart, the midfield looks good with good options out wide alongside with a strong centre if Hughes can get Lemina, Romeu, Hojbjerg and Ward Prowse playing to their abilities, something that Pellegrino rarely got them to do.

Whilst there is perhaps still the need for a striker if one of the current front options departs, the only real area that needs strengthening now is the centre of defence, which according to reports could be about to happen.

Saints announced the signing of Elyounoussi just after midday with the following statement.

Southampton Football Club is delighted to announce the signing of exciting young forward Mohamed Elyounoussi from FC Basel.

The versatile attacking player today completed his move from the Swiss Super League side, agreeing a five-year deal at St Mary’s.

Elyounoussi, 23, arrives off the back of two outstanding seasons with Basel, scoring 23 times in 83 appearances and assisting a further 30 times, helping the club to a domestic league and cup double in 2016/17.

Before that, the Moroccan-born Norwegian international enjoyed a fantastic spell with Molde, in Norway, netting 41 goals in 91 appearances for the club.

Elyounoussi, who already has 16 caps and four goals for his country, brings with him experience of both the Champions League and Europa League, having featured in close to 30 games across both competitions, and demonstrating an ability to play in a variety of different attacking roles.



Southampton manager Mark Hughes said: “Mohamed is clearly another very exciting addition to our attacking options.

“He has got an outstanding record of goals and assists in two different countries, and we have been extremely impressed by the intelligence he has shown in his play from a tactical point of view.

“He’s still at a young age as well, so we’re confident he can continue to improve and fulfil even more of his potential with us, and, following on from the arrival of Stuart Armstrong this week, we feel we have made real progress in adding a new dimension to our attack ahead of the season.”

Commenting on the move, Mohamed Elyounoussi said: “I’m really happy to be here and I am really excited to get started.

“The club has been following me for a long time, watching many games, so I feel really confident to come here and to get even better and develop myself.

“It’s a family club that is known for bringing in players, developing them and for younger players to get better.

“I’m a hard worker on the pitch and I like to create chances, either for me or to play others through. That’s where I’m at my best, when I can use my creativity, so I think the philosophy of the club will suit me very well.”

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Photo: Action Images

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arthurfane added 13:00 - Jun 29
Great signing Saints. Exciting player who'll be a strong replacement for Tadic. Must say, surprised to see Boufal back at the club and working hard in training (has he made up with Hughes or is he just making sure potential suitors aren't put off by his bad attitude?) Maybe missing out on the world cup is the kick in the backside he needed to start fulfilling his massive potential. I know many think he's not worth persevering in but I think he can still be an enormous success for us.

davenbennett added 13:02 - Jun 29
Looks like a good replacement for Tadjic. Younger, stronger and more versatile in that he can play anywhere in a front 3. I agree we still need a proper CF, and a big CB better than we have. Then just sell deadwood, (Redmond, Classie) but keep best. Will be Interesting to see what happens to the likes of Gallagher, Targett and McQueen.

DPeps added 13:44 - Jun 29
Great news. He looks well-equipped to cope with the PL
And good to have signed someone so early on. Is Les's wall calendar on the wrong month? Seriously, though, let's hope this is just the start

saintjf added 14:11 - Jun 29
Why is it so difficult to type comments in? I keep having to start again........ The signing is great news as was Armstrong. Looking forward to August.

patred added 14:31 - Jun 29
yep, one out, then one in. At least it is a replacement. Unlike our central defenders.
I will be happy when that position is sorted, Fonte and VvD departures, along with the appointment of Pellegrino has sent this club spiralling from European qualification to near relegation. Ben Gibson and/or Gary Cahill would be the dream team in defence.
Our interest in Jamal Lewis of Norwich shows we may be selling Targett to Fulham, and Lewis is an excellent prospect and a replacement for him.

BoondockSaint added 14:51 - Jun 29
DPeps-Remember, Les usually goes on holiday from the end of the season until the last week of the transfer window, so Hughes must be getting it all done before he gets back!

Two new signings and it's still June!!
Seems like Sparky has lit a spark under the board and he wants his team in place and training together well before the start of the season-you know, like professional club does.

This is so much better than the usual dithering excuses we have been getting over the last two years: "Saints do things slowly and methodically." "No one gets signed while the World Cup is still being played." "Saints are not going to overpay." "Just because there is no news doesn't mean no deals are being done." "The players are on holidays." etc, etc.

Chesham_Saint added 15:48 - Jun 29
Great news and I agree with most of the above although I don't think of Redmond as "dead wood". If we hope Boufal comes good, why not Redmond?

1970 added 16:10 - Jun 29
great signing but I think even the most rose tinted of us fans know we need some additional quality if were going to shake off the rubbish from last season coyr

halftimeorange added 16:51 - Jun 29
Maybe Mohamed will be company for and the spur that Boufal needs in view of the Moroccan connection, however tenuous. I'm with everyone else inasmuch that these signings show positivity at board but there is more to be done. A centre back and a target man are still required. I am still mystified over the Caceres situation.

Bettwsresident added 18:47 - Jun 29
Great signing that fits the Saints template. I have a sneaky feeling that next year we will see a 'new' CB in Bednarek. He looked the buisness at the latter end of next season and was impressive in an otherwise lacklustre polish side at the world cup. With Hoedt in his second season and stephens as back up, I am not concerned.

I would also like to to Simms be given a chance to establish himseld in the first team. A livewire, with extreme pace, if he can just sort out his decision making, he could be a great home grown player.

Feeling really positive about next season. COYRs

Bettwsresident added 18:48 - Jun 29
Sorry, forgot about Mr Club, Yoshida!

underweststand added 15:22 - Jul 4
So... it's two in and more to come (if you believe all the gossip)
Mohamed seems to be a level-headed fellow who can alos speak English (watched his welcome video on Saints site). I saw him destroy Man .City in the CL last season (scored one and assist for one). Will be interesting to see how he handles the Prem.

Not sure who's he's meant to replace?..maybe not Tadic, but perhaps he'll be what Boufal ought to have become (?)...if he'd buckled down to doing his job.
Interesting cultural coupling ; Mo is. ...Morrocan-born but is a Norway international.(!)

With every day there are comments about new names we are meant to be scouting / signing)...only time will tell. Come August it will be interesting to see who moves away and who is still here from last season, but I'm quite impressed - so far. More please Les.

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