Southampton chasing Newcastle United youth talent

Southampton could be set to swoop on St James’ Park this summer with 18-year-old goalkeeper Freddie Woodman reportedly a target for the south coast club.

The Saints boast a burgeoning reputation for developing young talent, with the likes of Gareth Bale, Adam Lallana and James Ward-Prowse among the club’s most notable recent academy graduates.

According to The Chronicle, Southampton scouts have already watched Woodman play for Newcastle’s under-21 side and are hoping to take advantage of the current turmoil surrounding the Toon by submitting a bid for the ‘keeper.

Regarded as one of the Magpies best young talents, the 18-year-old has previously been linked with a move to Manchester City.

While it is unclear as to whether Woodman wishes to remain at St James’ Park, he could be tempted to follow the path taken by Fraser Forster.

The 27-year-old England international began his career with Newcastle United but after failing to force his way into the club’s first-team plans, sought a move elsewhere.

After impressing during a two-year spell at Celtic, Forster was given his big opportunity in the Premier League, moving to Southampton last summer.

It has proven to be a match made in heaven, with the ex-Magpie thriving as a part of a team boasting several young English stars.

And with Southampton setting their sights on a top four finish next season, while Newcastle could yet suffer relegation from the Premier League, a move away from the north east could prove a prospect too good for Woodman to refuse.

Much, however, could depend on the future of Tim Krul at the club.

The Dutch ‘keeper has been linked with a move away from the club for much of the season and could prove the ideal replacement for Hugo Lloris at Tottenham, should the Frenchman seek a move to a team offering the opportunity to play in the Champions League.

Should Krul depart, then Woodman could yet be willing to wait for an opportunity at Newcastle.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.