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Wanyama deal will take spending past £50m
Saints will take their spending on transfer fees since returning to the Premier League past the £50m mark if they sign Celtic’s Victor Wanyama.
The midfielder is expected to finalise his protracted move from the Scottish champions any time now, for a fee of about £12m.
Talks with Wanyama and his representatives had initially broken down when personal terms were discussed, but the deal was dramatically resurrected last week.
Kenyan international Wanyama has been away with Celtic on their pre-season tour of Germany, but was pulled out of a friendly match on Tuesday as discussions with Saints advanced.
He is now expected to conclude the remaining formalities of his move, possibly before Saints depart for their own training camp at the end of the week.
The official announcement of the transfer was somewhat pre-empted yesterday by Kenyan Football Federation president Sam Nyamweya, who issued a statement congratulating Wanyama on “making history” by joining Saints.
“As a federation we are extremely thrilled with this move by Victor, who has continued to be Kenya’s football ambassador due to his exploits on the pitch,” he said.
The sum paid for Wanyama will come close to matching the record amount that Saints shelled out to capture Gastón Ramírez from Bologna last summer.
It will also represent the biggest transfer deal in Scottish football history.
As well as that, it will nudge Saints’ spending for the summer over the £20m mark, after the signing of defender Dejan Lovren from Lyon in a deal worth up to £8.6m, and their total since winning promotion back to the Premier League beyond £50m.
And that stunning figure could rise to around the £70m mark if Saints somehow managed to bring in Brazilian striker Leandro Damião, who is on their radar this summer.
Last season, Saints spent approximately £35m in transfer fees, with Ramírez topping the list at £12m.
The available funds are not likely to run out after Wanyama, either.
Saints have been linked with a number of other high-profile transfers and there is a chance they could smash their own transfer record again this summer.
The club’s manager, Mauricio Pochettino, has admitted that Brazil international striker Damião is one they are monitoring.
The Internacional star was the subject of a £15.5m bid from Napoli this week, which was immediately rejected.
The Brazilian club have stated previously that they will not consider anything less than £21.5m for the player.
Saints are also said to have made a £17m bid for Roma striker Pablo Osvaldo, who worked with Pochettino at Espanyol.
It has been reported this week in Italy that directors at the Serie A club were overheard saying they wanted to pressure the 27-year-old into accepting the Saints deal, after one of them failed to properly hang up following a call from a journalist.
Osvaldo is previously said to have rejected the idea of a move to Saints.
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