Southampton Transfer News: Saints sign Premier League defender

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl giving the thumbs-up

Southampton have completed the signing of teenage left-back Thierry Small from Everton, as confirmed by the club’s official website.

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What’s the latest transfer news involving Thierry Small?

The 17-year-old had been looking for a move away from Everton, and terminated his two-year scholarship with the club this week.

He has now got his wish after signing a three-year deal with the Saints on Tuesday morning.

The South Coast club still need to settle on a compensation fee with their Merseyside counterparts, which is likely to be determined by a tribunal. It is understood that they may have to pay up to £5m.

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Which other clubs showed an interest in Small?

A host of Premier League clubs have have been keen on signing Small in recent months including Manchester United, Arsenal, Leeds United and Aston Villa. This gives an indication of how highly-rated the full-back is.

Southampton have beaten their competitors to his signature, though. Getting this deal over the line is a major coup for the club, as Small seems to be an extremely talented youngster.

What has Small achieved so far in his career?

Small only turned 17 at the start of the month but he has already made an impact at youth level for Everton.

Last season he made 13 league appearances for the Under-23s, scoring three goals and providing an assist in these matches.

His displays at that level saw him earn a call-up to the first-team in January, and he became the club’s youngest-ever player when he made a cameo appearance from the bench against Sheffield United in the FA Cup.

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Another Livramento?

Earlier this month, Southampton secured the signing of Tino Livramento from Chelsea. The right-back has already caught the eye on the South Coast after winning the man-of-the-match award against Manchester United on Sunday, and there are undoubtedly some comparisons between his and Small’s career paths.

The pair are both highly-talented teenagers who have come through the academies of Premier League clubs, and they have seemingly been offered the chance to play first-team football by Southampton.

Livramento has grasped his opportunity with both hands, starting the side’s opening two league games this season. Small may have to show more patience, as Romain Perraud is currently the player in possession of the left-back shirt in Ralph Hasenhuttl’s team.

Still, Hasenhuttl does not seem to be afraid to give youth a chance, and if Small can settle in quickly at Southampton he could force his way into the starting XI sooner rather than later.

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