Southampton reportedly interested in signing 23-year-old from AZ

Saints are closing in on a new defender to replace Ryan Bertrand, a 23-year-old Dutch left-back who has impressed this year for his club in Holland.

According to reports in the Daily Echo, Southampton FC is in line to sign young Dutch defender Ridgeciano Haps, who currently plays his football for AZ Alkmaar.

This follows strong interest from Chelsea for fellow left-back Ryan Bertrand, where a deal has yet to be reached.

The defender Ridgeciano Haps has played 33 times in the Eredivisie during 2016/2017 and is yet another young Dutchman who has impressed in defence this season.

WhoScored give him an average rating in the league of 7.19 for the season, having set up two goals and averaged 33.4 passes per game.

He shows a lot of confidence on the ball contributing those two assists in the league as well as off the ball where he offers pace and timing of his runs. He also scored a sensational goal against Zenit St. Petersburg in the Europa League. You can see this courtesy of Daily Motion.

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How will Hips fare in the English top flight?

Ridgeciano Haps is strong and skillful and is not your typical fullback. Southampton has put him on their radar due to the raw ability, granting the defender the chance the move to Europe’s top league.

We have seen defenders do well who have made the move from the Netherlands to the Premier League, for instance, Jaap Stam, Jan Vertonghen and Thomas Vermaelen.

What’s more Southampton have successfully raided the Netherlands for players in the past, with Dusan Tadic, Graziano Pelle and Jody Clasie all joining in recent seasons.

More importantly for Saints fans, he appears to have a tackle in him, but is a true showboat as well, which would excite St Mary’s I feel. In the absence of Nathaniel Clyne and possibly Ryan Bertrand, I would consider a move for Ridgeciano Haps to be an excellent entourage from Saints.