Promising Southampton defender Dynel Simeu has been training with the first-team ahead of the upcoming Premier League fixture against Manchester United.
The 19-year-old joined Saints from Chelsea on free transfer earlier this summer and was pictured in a first-team training gallery on Tuesday. He did not take part in the B team’s friendly against Leyton Orient on Wednesday, which suggests he could be in the senior matchday squad either this weekend or in the League Cup against Newport County next week.
Simeu played in his first competitive B team game with Saints last Saturday in a 3-0 loss to Norwich City and was expected to remain at that level of football for much of this season to aid his development.
However, it seems as though he may be in line for first-team action sooner rather than later if the club’s actions are anything to go by.
Southampton need a defender even if Simeu makes the senior step
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Simeu cannot and will not be expected to hold down a senior place at this stage of his career. He is yet to play at senior level having spent his youth days with Chelsea after growing up in the Southampton area.
Right now it is more about giving him a taste of what is to come in the next few seasons after this one. Next Wednesday’s cup tie against Newport could the ideal place to give him his first minutes if he has experienced players around him to help out.
Saints do need to sign another defender with just Jack Stephens, Jan Bednarek and Mohammed Salisu as the senior options after the sale of Jannik Vestergaard to Leicester. Ideally, via reports from the likes of Hampshire Live, Ralph Hasenhuttl would like a defender capable of playing in midfield too.
Simeu will be causing Hasenhuttl a headache in the future if he continues to work well on his own game. Right now though, it is about impressing in training and using his first tastes of senior action as further development for things to come.