Southampton and Leicester City have agreed a £15m deal for defender Jannik Vestergaard to move to the King Power Stadium.
According to a report from the Athletic’s Dan Sheldon, the deal was agreed on Wednesday and Vestergaard will have his medical with Leicester on Thursday having already agreed terms with Leicester.
For Saints, it will be a tough ask to replace the 28-year-old having seen him become a key part of their team under Ralph Hasenhuttl. His ability to play out from defence was crucial to building attacks and became particularly noticeable in the 2020/21 season.
The 6ft 5in defender made 79 appearances in all on the South Coast after his £22m transfer from Borussia Monchengladbach in 2018.
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Via Hampshire Live, Saints will look to add a defender to their ranks to fill the void left by Vestergaard but it is likely to be a player in the early stages of their career.
They may already have their direct replacement for the big Dane in their line-up though in Mohammed Salisu.
The Ghanaian has played a big part in pre-season after impressing in his first appearances for Saints during the last campaign. It took a while for him to build up his fitness after arriving in England with an injury problem, but he proved an imposing figure for opposition attackers to come up against.
Having a strong left foot too, he is a natural fit for the left-sided centre-back role that Vestergaard usually took.
Vestergaard is just the latest high-profile departure from Saints and follows Ryan Bertrand and Danny Ings out the door at St Mary’s this summer. What the club need to do is make sure they retain strength in depth before the transfer window closes at the end of this month.
Jan Bednarek and Jack Stephens are alongside Mohammed Salisu right now and all three are highly-capable Premier League defenders. 19-year-old Dynel Simeu arrived from Chelsea but is unlikely to be a senior player at this stage.
It will be intriguing to see who Saints now move for, with Liverpool’s Nat Phillips already linked in recent days.
Saints summer signings: Walcott, Perraud, Livramento, Simeu, Broja, Armstrong
Saints summer departures with Vestergaard (including loans): Ings, Lemina, Ramsay, Vokins, Gunn, Hoedt, Jankewitz, N’Lundulu, Slattery, Ferry, Vestergaard