BOSS Ralph Hasenhuttl is relishing the prospect of utilising Takumi Minamino’s quality in a Saints shirt and insisted: “I know he can immediately help us.”

The Japanese attacking midfielder is expected to be part of Saints’ squad for tomorrow’s Premier League showdown at Newcastle United (3pm).

Minamimo was a dramatic deadline day arrival at St Mary’s with the announcement of the loan deal from Liverpool going into the early hours of Tuesday morning.

But Hasenhuttl is pleased to have sealed a move for the 26-year-old, who helped Jurgen Klopp’s men seal the Premier League title last season.

Asked about fitting Minamino into his squad, the Saints boss said: “I had on Thursday the first time to speak to him a little bit longer – in German. He spoke very good German because he played for long in Austria.

“I mean it’s not only because Jurgen said it’s the right choice for us - I know he can immediately help us.

“That’s the reason why I’m very happy that he’s around the team now. He showed me in the first session in that he has qualities that are very helpful for us in every moment.

“I am definitely happy to have him here in the squad.”

Japan international Minamino started his career at Cerezo Osaka before joining Red Bull Salzburg in 2015.

He played 199 times for Salzburg in all competitions, scoring 64 goals and registering 44 assists.

The impressive haul earned him a move to Anfield in January 2020 – the Reds activating a £7.25million release clause in his contract.

He has played 31 times for Jurgen Klopp’s men in all competitions, winning the Premier League title last season, before linking up with Saints.

Asked how long he had a admired the attacking midfielder for, Hasenhuttl replied: “Richard (Kitzbichler) worked with him, my assistant coach, he knows him well. When he joined Liverpool I said: 'Why are we not able to get this player?'

"It is getting more and more difficult to get players from Salzburg. They're in the Champions League now so their players don't need clubs like us to make the next step, like (Erling) Haaland, he went immediately to Dortmund.

"I am happy that he is here.

“It is not normal that a player like him says that he wants to find more chances to play and then goes looking for the right club, I think we are the right club. The way we want to play fits him, I hope we see it in the future.

"He should just do what he normally does. He should play some good stuff and help us to win games. I know that he can do it."

He added: "I very often have contact about players with Jurgen, when I think they can help us. That is why it happened.

"During the winter you are looking for players who are available, not a lot of team give players away. They think this is good for the player because the way we play football will help him, to develop him. It's better playing with us that sitting on the bench."