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Saints Said To Be In Negotiations For A Central Defender With A Twist
Monday, 22nd Jun 2020 09:31

I should have a ready made template for the headline of this story as yet another central defender is said to be close to joining Saints, but this story has an interesting twist in that Paul Mitchell is entwined in the tale.

Saints are said to be interested in signing Axel Disasi a 22 year old central defender from Stade Reims, not the first time this has been mentioned and Arsenal & Wolves have also been linked to the player who is entering the last year of his contract at the French club.

Now L'Equipe sports paper in France reports that Saints have been in negotiations for the player for "several weeks" and are willing to meet Stade Reims €15 valuation, just over £13,5 million at the current exchange rate.

But there is a twist, also said to be interested are AS Monaco led by their Director of Football Paul Mitchell who most Saints fans will remember as our head of scouting between 2012 -2014 when he then followed Mauricio Pochettino to Tottenham.

Mitchell received a lot of credit for Saints recruitment at the time, but his career path has not been one of staying in one place for very long since his departure from St Mary's.

His stay at Spurs turned sour after less than two years when it was reported he was serving out his 16 month notice period, having done that he joined Red Bull Leipzig in February 2018 and initially he seemed to be doing well, several Premier Leagues were said to be offering him a return to the UK, Manchester United were heavily linked as were Saints themselves after the departure of Les Reed.

But in September last year it was announced he had signed a deal to become Technical Director of Red Bull's Global Soccer division on a three year contract, but that has lasted barely 9 months and it was announced last week that he had joined AS Monaco as Sporting Director.

It seems that his first work at the club in trying to bring in Axel Disasi ironically brings him into competition with his old employers Saints.

Disasi who will turn 23 in November has been at Stade Reims 3 years since joining on a free transfer, primarily a Central Defender who is also able to play at right back , he initially struggled to get game time at Reims, in 2018/19 he spent a lot of time on the bench but barely got on the pitch until the final weeks of that seaso, but that only brought his game time up to 151 minutes spread over 4 games.

But this season has been different and he played in every minute of the club's first 27 League games, missing only the 28th and it turned out final game back in March.

Now it seems that it is down to just two clubs being serious and that is Saints and Monaco, the French club have struggled in the last few seasons and are now trying to rebuild, will the lure of a French giant be more attractive to Disasi than the Premier League, we will soon find out or indeed if this is just more paper talk fueled by agents.

Photo: Action Images

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