Southampton eye Uruguay star Alvaro Gonzalez
Southampton, 15/8 for a top 10 finish, are linked with an £8m bid for Lazio midfielder Alvaro Gonzalez, with a mooted move for Spurs star Andros Townsend now looking unlikely.
Ronald Koeman is still keen to bolster the Saints squad, which has been severely depleted this summer, despite already adding seven fresh faces to his south coast contingent.
Gonzalez, 29, began his career at hometown club Defensor Sporting, before enjoying stints at South American giants Boca Juniors and Uruguayan outfit Nacional.
Moving to Lazio in 2010, he has made 109 appearances for the Serie A side in his four seasons at the club, netting six times and lifting the 2013 Coppa Italia. Aside from extensive top flight experience, Gonzalez also has 47 caps for his country, and played in all four of La Celeste’s World Cup clashes.
Southampton could benefit greatly from Gonzalez’s versatility and ability to plug numerous holes in the squad, with the reliable South American able to operate as a midfield anchor or wing back.
Saints have already lost adaptable defender Calum Chambers to Arsenal, and require support for Nathaniel Clyne, with rumours also circulating that Tottenham have not given up hope of luring midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin to north London.
It appears that Spurs are not willing to play ball with Saints, though, who are reported to be interested in White Hart Lane winger Andros Townsend. The 23-year-old missed out on Roy Hodgson’s World Cup squad due to injury, despite a bright start to last term, which included his first Premier League goal for the north London club.
Speaking recently, Southampton coach Koeman said: “We are still looking to sign one or two more players including a winger.”
It now seems he will have to look elsewhere, though, with yet another transfer target scuppered for the Saints, who have had difficulties recruiting following the St Mary’s exodus.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino recently spoke of his desire to keep Townsend at the club, stating: “He is an important player, he is a player for the English national team.
“He missed the World Cup with injury. We need to recover a player like him because he has great potential and very good quality.”
Townsend is also tipped to be a top target for QPR coach Harry Redknapp, who is 6/1 to help the Hoops to a top 10 finish. The England attacker has previously impressed on loan at Loftus Road in 2012/13, netting two goals in 12 appearances, but Redknapp will have to stump up a significant sum to prise the wingman away from Pochettino.