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Watt View - Wilson would show intent to challenge
Wednesday, 12th Aug 2020 11:45 by Matt Watts

This week Matt takes a look at a potential transfer target for Saints and ponders that he could transform Saints into a team that could make a serious challenge for a top 6 place going forward.

The transfer market and rumour mill is in full flow, as you would expect in the close season, and there will no doubt be many a misleading report among the hundreds of moves touted.

There is one, however, that has taken my fancy and that is Liverpool winger and former Bournemouth loanee Harry Wilson’s link to a possible switch to St Mary’s.

The 23-year-old Welsh wizard is attracting the attention of Leeds United, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Newcastle United, with Saints among the latest to express an interest.

With the champions prepared to let the promising prospect go for £20 million, I believe any Premier League team outside of the top six - and possibly in the elite European leagues - would have an eye on developments surrounding this talent.

It is believed Liverpool are torn when it comes to parting with the youngster, having signed him at the age of eight and taken him on full-time at 15.

He has also enjoyed successful load spells at Hull City (13 games, seven goals), Derby County (40 games, 15 goals) and, most recently, the Cherries (31 games, seven goals) where he endured a tough season which ended in the side’s relegation.

He has become known as a player able to deliver something special and, for that reason, the choice to move him on is a difficult one for manager Jurgen Klopp given that he may yet still flourish in the Premier League - but not at Anfield.

The question it seems, it not a matter of if Wilson can find a suitable location to develop his creativity further, but when and with who. To me, there seems no better place than at St Mary’s under a manager in Ralph Hasenhüttl who is likened to the Reds boss and is developing his own special project on the south coast.

Wilson has no doubt demonstrated he has the ability to not only compete in the top flight but to be that player who can create and execute a moment of individual brilliance - and, at his age, has many years to nurture that talent.

Although very different circumstances, Danny Ings has transitioned with perfection since his move to St Mary’s from Liverpool, and I have no doubt Wilson would also find his feet quickly under Hasenhüttl given the manager’s style of play and man management skills.

Given the strong finish to the season, Saints are an attractive option to quality Premier League players looking to reignite their careers in a high-intensity, high-performing team.

For me, if the club was to make an approach and subsequently secure the services of Wilson, it would be a signal of intent for what they hope to achieve over the course of the next few years.

Although I stated in my column two weeks ago how the first team almost picks itself and could quite possibly go into next season off of the momentum built up at the tail end of the last, quality signings at a reasonable price are always welcome as we look to build a squad to continue moving forwards.

With full-back Kyle Walker-Peters confirmed and the imminent announcement of centre-back Mohamed Salisu, Wilson would make that a very solid and cost-efficient trio of signings which would make a statement of that Saints are aiming to once again challenge immediately outside of the top six.

Photo: Action Images

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ExiledSupporter added 13:35 - Aug 13
Yes, I like Wilson as a talented player with much as yet unrealised potential.

But I can't see us buying him at £20m given the cost of all those players that we need to shift so urgently to lower our running costs and also to generate some considerable cash for the couple more experienced players badly needed. After all we have two other wingers (Boufal talented but usually underachieving and Djenepo, difficult first year but fast and threatening if unpredictable)

We more need an experienced centre back (and have to move Hoedt and Vestergaard if at all possible) and a box to box midfielder with a fantastic engine, I think I have seen reference to a US international playing in Germany (Weston... something or other who sounds a possible recruit)

So no I can't see us affording Wilson in tight financial times, but there's much time for the situation to improve.

By the way, anyone who knows much about football could quickly see that Vestergard turned far too slowly and had insufficient pace, so how did we persuade ourselves to buy him. Whose decision was that? I think he arrived after MH had gone, so do we really think he was Ralf's choice. If so that gives rise to some difficult questions...

NewburySaint added 18:37 - Aug 13
Have to disagree-it would be boring if we all agreed!

Have seen a lot of Wilson and, yes he has a great delivery and score from free kicks, but I’ve never seen him offer much else to Derby & Bum Mouth-a left footed JWP if you will, just not as good.

REEDYREEDOREEDZ added 19:49 - Aug 13
NewburySaint is right about Harry Wilson. He's a set-piece specialist but doesn't offer anything else. Would be a pointless signing for us.

Peterx added 15:21 - Aug 14
Really cant work up any enthusiasm for us to spend 20M on Wilson. Much rather use RH's network to pick up a well priced European based central midfield player. I really cant believe we are being linked with him.

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