Southampton have completed the £15million signing of striker Che Adams from Championship Birmingham City. The 22-year-old has signed a five-year deal with the Saints. Former club Sheffield United will receive a 20 per cent sell-on clause of around £3million from the deal.
Adams had been linked with a move to the Premier League in the January transfer window. However, no deal materialised and he remained with the Blues.
Can he step up to the Premier League?
Adams burst on the scene last season in the English second tier last season. In fact, the forward scored 22 goals and produced six assists for the team from the Midlands. The youngster looked like one of the most dangerous attacking players outside the Premier League last season, despite playing in a struggling team.
Adams looks to be the sort of player that the Saints have missed in recent seasons. The team from the south coast have struggled for goals in the last few campaigns, which has led to the Saints to fighting relegation.
The likes of Charlie Austin, Shane Long and Danny Ings have all tried and failed to shoulder the attacking burden in recent campaigns. The signing of Adams could push the likes of Austin and Long towards the exit door, as Ings only joined the club last summer from Liverpool.
Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl likes to play with a lone striker, so four strikers is too many to keep happy.
Hasenhuttl likes to play attacking football
Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl has displayed throughout his managerial career that he likes to play attacking football, which will likely suit a finisher like Adams.
The Saints have produced far more of an attacking threat under the Austrian than their previous recent bosses. The style of play should suit Adams, as he will likely get lots of scoring chances.
As he has already proven at Birmingham, if he is given chances, he will score goals. He is by no means the finished article and is still raw. However, his power and explosive pace are two attributes that could be key to him becoming a success on the south coast.
The forward, who can also play in midfield, has won the Young Player of the Year award at both Sheffield United and Birmingham just highlight his potential. If he can develop his current ability, Adams could prove to be a massive bargain.
Southampton could finish higher under Hasenhuttl
This season will be Hasenhuttl’s first full campaign in charge of the Saints. The team has struggled near the foot of the Premier League table in the last few seasons.
However, the Austrian has enough managerial acumen to help the Saints to avoid the relegation battle next season. The fact that the Saints boss has a chance to bring in his own players this summer will be the key to how well the team from the south coast fare in the top-flight next season.
Hasenhuttl had a history of moulding young players at RB Leipzig. Che Adams certainly looks like he has all the attributes to potentially be the goalscorer that the Saints have been crying out for for years.
Can Che Adams solve Southampton’s goalscoring problems?