SAINTS boss Ralph Hasenhuttl believes it’s crucial to scour the club’s academy before investing in new players this summer.

Hasenhuttl’s keen to bolster his defence ahead of the 2020/21 campaign, with tonight’s counterparts, Manchester United, being linked with a move for Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho.

And Saints’ manager highlighted the importance of ensuring you aren’t stifling someone else’s development by bringing new players into the squad.

“The first thing is you have to scan your own academy for whatever you have and what you miss. 

“It’s never in any club that you have fantastic players in every position in the youth. If you have a problem in one position, then you must focus on one position and then don’t block anybody.

“It’s right, if you have, for example, two good young 6s in your squad and you don’t want to drop them, then it’s not really helpful if you set one in front and then say, ‘Now you have to be better than him’.

“I think it’s better that you give him the chance to show up.

“That doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have any pressure. Everybody has to be performing well.

“In the end, as a young player, you get your chances but not endless chances. If you don’t need them immediately, it can be quicker overall.

“We try to build them up slowly, give them a few minutes here and there and when you see that he still has both feet on the ground and keen to work and learn and open-minded, then we feel we can develop any player.

“At the moment it seems all the players are in a good way."