SAINTS have reportedly agreed a club record £12m deal for Uruguayan star winger Gaston Ramirez.
The €15m move for the 21-year-old would smash Southampton's record fee - the £7m paid earlier in the summer for striker Jay Rodriguez - and represent a huge coup for the St Mary's side.
The 21-year-old international has been quoted in Italy today as saying he has agreed a four-year deal with Saints to complete a switch from Serie A side Bologna.
As reported by the Daily Echo , Ramirez had turned down a move to
Spurs after the White Hart Lane club failed to match his wage demands.
"Bologna has reached an economic agreement with Southampton," he told
Corriere Dello Sport.
"There are only a few details, but they have found the agreement in principle. And the English club has reached an agreement with me.
"It is an offer that you cannot refuse. They give me so much money that I put in my life and support the whole family."
Ramirez added: "They believe in me in every way... And above all I have said that they are going to grow.
"Southampton is a newly promoted team in the English top flight, but they have the means to stand tall in a few years. And with me they are going to build. It's all very stimulating. Even if it is
a little strange".
The report in Italy suggests Ramirez will be paid €2m a year and a €1m signing on fee by Saints - all net.
If true, that means the winger could be paid in the region of £70,000 a week before deductions and a signing on fee of almost £800,000, which is believed to make him comfortably the highest paid
player at the club.
70 per cent owned by Bologna and 30 per cent owned by his previous club, Peñarol, meaning Saints will have to pay both clubs to secure the midfielder's services.
Reports in Uruguay suggest Southampton will pay €15m (£11.85m) to Bologna and a further fee to Peñarol, which could be around €5m (£3.55m).