Southampton keen on £25m Benfica striker Goncalo Ramos

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Southampton and Newcastle to fight over £25m striker Goncalo Ramos - AFP
Southampton and Newcastle to fight over £25m striker Goncalo Ramos - AFP

Southampton are ready to compete for Benfica striker Gonçalo Ramos as they attempt to bolster Ralph Hasenhuttl’s attack with a high-profile forward ahead of the summer transfer deadline.

Ramos, 21, has been linked with Wolves and could move to the Premier League in the next fortnight, with Saints also pushing in the race for the Portugal Under-21 international. Newcastle are also admirers but their priority is a right-sided forward, with Ramos seen as a No9 and Callum Wilson will lead the attack at St James’ Park this season.

Hasenhuttl’s team have picked up one point from their opening two matches of the season and have been looking to invest in a goalscorer, with Ramos expected to cost £25million.

Saints have invested in young players this summer, with Joe Aribo their only first-team arrival over the age of 21. While Ramos is also in the age bracket of other signings, he comes with a growing reputation after breaking into Benfica’s team as a regular last season.

Adam Armstrong and Aribo started in the defeat to Tottenham on the opening weekend of the season, with Che Adams leading the attack in the draw against Leeds on Saturday. Other Premier League teams have shown an interest in signing Adams.

Southampton are also in the frame for Manchester United midfielder James Garner, who has been made available for transfer by his club. The 21-year-old helped Nottingham Forest earn promotion last season and has no shortage of takers, which includes Southampton.

Ramos started in Benfica’s youth team nine years ago and played for their B team until his run in the first team last season, by which time he had been playing for the Portugal Under-21s and had helped them finish runners-up in the Euros last year.