Ralph Hasenhuttl is closing in on his first Saints signing after agreeing a £14m fee for Standard Liege forward Moussa Djenepo.

The 20-year-old Mali international will undergo a medical in the next 24 hours but is not expected to be officially announced as having signed for at least another week while the club try and secure a work permit.

Djenepo, who is a pacy left sided attacker, caught the attention of Saints after a standout campaign at the Belgian club last season where he scored 11 times in 38 appearances.

Djenepo joined Standard Liege on loan from Yeelen Olimpique in Mali two years ago and did enough to convince them to trigger a release clause of €50,000 to capture him permanently.

It has been a meteoric rise since then for Djenepo and Standard have decided the time is right to cash in and make a fast and hefty profit.

Terms have been agreed over a five-year contract at St Mary’s and the only remaining obstacle is the work permit issue.

The Daily Echo understands that Saints are confident that it will not prove a major issue but recognise the need for patience while the process plays out.

Djenepo has made eight appearances for Mali and scored his first international goal in March in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against South Sudan. He is in the squad for this summer's full tournment in Egypt.

The signing of Djenepo will be a first signing for Hasenhuttl at St Mary’s.

The Saints boss opted not to make any additions to his squad in the January transfer window despite the club’s perilous position in their battle against relegation.

He instead focussed on moving players on and promoting youngsters into the first team squad.

However, he has been insistent that new additions are vital this summer to prevent the club scrapping to avoid the drop again next season.

Djenepo perfectly fits the mould for Hasenhuttl and Saints.

He has stated that he wants young players who are making their first or second move but will be hungry for the chance to play for Saints to try and further their careers.

Signing a winger is an interesting move as the wide midfield areas are one part of the Saints squad in which there is already much competition with Daily Echo Player of the Season Nathan Redmond often occupying the left sided attacking berth that is Djenepo’s natural position.

Hasenhuttl has, though, been clear that he wants to add pace to his attacking options along with more direct running and Djenepo can provide that.

Djenepo is unlikely to be the final attacking addition to the squad for Hasenhuttl who is also believed to want to bring another striker into the club if the right opportunity arises.

However, the theme of this summer remains that Saints need to move players on in order to free up funds for further moves.