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New Southampton signing could clear the way for Schneiderlin deal

Jamie McDonald

Even though Southampton have suffered a mass exodus this season, they haven't sold off any of their central midfielders. But despite that, they've just added another one, with Saphir Taider joining on loan from Inter Milan with an option to buy.

This means that Southampton have all of Victor Wanyama, Jack Cork, James Ward-Prowse, Steven Davis, Saphir Taider and Morgan Schneiderlin under contract, as well as youngster Harrison Reed, who has made a handful of Premier League appearances. They also have a couple of central attacking midfielders, Gaston Ramirez and new signing Dusan Tadic. That's a lot of depth. Southampton are only going to play three or four of those eight players at a time.

There haven't been any new developments in Schneiderlin-related news or rumors over the last 24 hours, but it would be surprising if Taider wasn't brought in as a pure Schneiderlin replacement. He's a box-to-box midfielder capable of playing in a pivot or three-man midfield. He's very athletic, good defensively and surprisingly good technically for a defensive midfielder. He's young, less polished Morgan Schneiderlin.

Southampton said that Schneiderlin wasn't for sale, but since they've bought his replacement ahead of selling him, unlike all the other players they've gotten rid of, their fans will probably be a bit less angry about this sale. I'll be surprised if the deal doesn't get done now that Southampton have Taider locked down.