By 90Min
August 15, 2017
Southampton have stepped up their pursuit of Lazio defender Wesley Hoedt by tabling a £17m offer for the player.

As reported by Italian publication Calciomercato, the Saints have earmarked the Dutchman as the heir apparent to countryman Virgil van Dijk, who has long been known to be on the way out of St Mary's this summer following an official transfer request.

23-year-old Hoedt initially struggled to find his feet in Serie A, having arrived at the Stadio Olimpico on a free transfer from AZ Alkmaar in 2015.

However, the season just gone saw the central defender establish himself as a regular starter in Filippo Inzaghi's side, impressing in his 26 competitive appearances for the Biancocelesti, where he also chipped in with 3 goals. 

His form was deemed sufficient for a call up to the full Dutch national side earlier this year, and he has gone on to make four appearances for the Oranje.

Hoedt is noted for his fantastic passing ability from the back, with a wand of a left foot that more befits a creative midfielder.

This is not dissimilar to the ambidextrous Van Dijk, and Southampton's comparison of the two players is understandable.

And a move to the English South coast appears to be imminent, as he was left out of the Lazio starting eleven for their Italian Super Cup victory against giants Juventus over the weekend, with suggestions that he has likely played his final game in a Biancocelesti jersey.

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