Southampton are reportedly one of four Premier League clubs looking to sign 18-year-old winger Amari Miller from Birmingham City.
According to a report from Birmingham Live, Saints have joined Leeds, Everton and Spurs in the race to sign Miller, who has graduated from the same academy system as Borussia Dortmund midfielder and England international Jude Bellingham.
Birmingham manager Lee Bowyer promoted the youngster to his first-team squad in the latter stages of last season and handed him two starts amongst five Championship appearances.
Via Birmingham Live’s report, we learn that Miller has not yet signed his first professional deal with the Blues and this could see another club steal in to take him away from St Andrews.
Southampton offer something different for young players
Unlike some other teams, there is a direct pathway for Saints youngsters to reach the first-team if they prove that they are ready.
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Seven academy talents made their first appearances at senior level in the 2020/21 season and Ralph Hasenhuttl is prepared to use players from the Under-18s and Under-23s sides if required.
Injuries and a tough schedule around the Christmas period meant that the entire Saints bench was made up of academy players at points but some will have earned their chance to impress.
Miller will be thinking about all of this as he weighs up his decision. He will want to be somewhere where senior football is achievable.
Saints also have a past record of snapping up players who have links to Birmingham. Ramello Mitchell joined the Saints academy from the Blues ahead of the 2019/20 season, whilst Nathan Redmond is amongst some of the best players to have come through their academy setup.
There will be a drive at St Mary’s to find some of the best young English talent with recruitment law changes limiting their ability to bring in players from abroad post-Brexit.