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Southampton Opinion: Saints should make a move for Tyrone Mings

According to the Daily Echo, Southampton are weighing up a move for Bournemouth defender Tyrone Mings in the summer, with manager Ralph Hasenhuttl keen to bolster his options at the back.

The 26-year-old found regular minutes hard to come by at Bournemouth in the first half of the season but he has set the stage on fire ever since his loan move to Championship outfit Aston Villa in January.

He has been an ever-present at the back for Dean Smith’s side in recent weeks and has impressed with his solid displays, helping the Lions to four consecutive victories in the Championship.

Villa’s porous and vulnerable backline has evoked plenty of criticism for their lacklustre performances but there has been a dramatic turnaround of fortunes since Mings’ arrival.

The Englishman has been a key component of a backline that has shipped 8 goals in their last 9 Championship outings, which is a massive improvement given that they shipped more than 1.5 goals per game on an average prior to his arrival.

His stellar performances have also put Villa right back in contention for a place in the promotion playoffs.

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To put things into perspective, Southampton’s interest in Mings should come as little surprise to the fans considering that the Saints do not have a great defensive record in the Premier League this season, having conceded 50 goals in 30 games so far.

Wesley Hoedt was loaned out to Celta Vigo in January despite featuring regularly under former manager Mark Hughes, which makes it quite clear that the Dutchman doesn’t feature in Hasenhuttl’s plans.

Jan Bednarek and Jannik Vestergaard have looked solid in a back-three system in recent games but Maya Yoshida and Jack Stephens have been rather inconsistent.

Standing at 6ft.5 inches with a towering frame, Mings is a strong and powerful defender, who can play at both centre-back and left-back.

Given that Vestergaard often struggles to deal with pacy opposition, Mings’ physical strength and aerial ability, coupled with his pace and agility should make him a good fit for Southampton’s backline alongside the Dane.

Mings is an aggressive defender who never shies away from a tough challenge or two, whilst also boasting of good composure and appreciable game-reading ability. Furthermore, he is comfortable on the ball and has the ability to set up attacks from the back with precise long-balls.

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The 26-year-old has averaged 2.2 aerial duels, 1.3 tackles, 1.3 interceptions, 4.9 clearances and 7.6 accurate long passes per game in the Championship this season, figures which speak volumes of his well-rounded abilities as a defender.

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Southampton have somewhat steered themselves to safety in the Premier League this season but the Saints need to add a few fresh faces to their squad in the summer to give themselves a better chance of securing a respectable mid-table finish next term.

Tyrone Mings is certainly a good option and his red-hot form should convince Southampton to bring him back to the south coast in a bid to shore up their leaky backline.

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