Southampton have confirmed their 13th summer transfer with young defender Will Ferry signing a new two-year contract before joining Crawley Town on a season-long loan.
The 21-year-old is yet to make his first-team debut for Saints but will surely benefit from the game time he gets in League Two this season.
With a lack of competition at full-back in 2020/21, Ferry made 19 Premier League and FA Cup squads and looks to be on the fringes of Ralph Hasenhuttl’s future plans.
Ferry is the ninth Saints player to depart the club in this off-season and fourth academy graduate to take a loan deal, whilst four players have been signed so far.
Southampton making more space as transfer market hots up
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Looking at the players that Saints have managed to move on permanently this summer, it is clear that there is more room around the squad for academy players or new signings.
Mario Lemina moving to OGC Nice and Angus Gunn re-signing with Norwich City were perhaps the highest profile departures and would have provided Saints with a small amount of money to put back into their own transfer activity.
Alex Jankewitz, Wesley Hoedt and Callum Slattery have also departed to join Young Boys, Anderlecht and Motherwell to free up further wage funds and more optimised squad depth.
It will be key for the loanees to continue their development away from the club and prove that they can be long-term options at St Mary’s when they return. Perhaps they can be the start of a new push for youth talent through to the senior ranks.
Summer departures may also help to give a clue about where further signings might be added. Three full-backs have been allowed to leave as Ralph Hasenhuttl continues to talk about more defensive additions.
Kyle Walker-Peters has Tino Livramento competing with him for a starting berth for the upcoming campaign, whilst Romain Perraud has little natural competition now.
Rumours about potential left-back additions continue to swirl in the media and it is likely a new face will be added to the defence before the transfer window shuts at the end of August.