Saints star set to be targeted in cash plus player deal

Southampton Football Club

Southampton's young star Luke Shaw is believed to be a target for Chelsea, who are preparing a cash plus Ryan Bertrand bid for the prospect.

Southampton chairman Nicola Cortese and his manager, Mauricio Pochettino, may well have made it clear that Luke Shaw is not for sale, but Chelsea intend to test the waters.

The Mirror reports that last season's Europa League winners intend to test the Saints' resolve with an £8m cash bid, supplemented by the addition of Ryan Bertrand, who has failed to make the left-back slot his own.

Bertrand featured under former Chelsea boss Di Matteo at the start of the 2012/13 season, after impressing for Great Britain at the London 2012 Olympic Games. He made 19 appearances that season in the Premier League, becoming a viable alternative to Ashley Cole.

Since the return of Jose Mourinho however, he has yet again found himself left in the lurch at the London club. Now, at the age of twenty four, it is thought that Bertrand would be prepared to depart Stamford Bridge in search of regular football.

The left-back has caught the eye of fellow west London side Fulham in recent days, with the Cottagers making an enquiry for his services.

Whilst Southampton are likely to reject Chelsea's approach this January, the Saints would offer Bertrand an enticing and energetic style that best suits the assets of his game. Chelsea hope that this will appeal to Southampton, with Mourinho's men intending to return for Shaw next summer.

Mourinho sees Shaw as Ashley Cole's natural successor. Shaw, 18, is a Chelsea fan himself, and having been rejected by the club a decade ago due to his height, would be keen on the move if it was likely to prove beneficial to his career and long-term development.

Ashley Cole himself even went public in his backing of Shaw becoming the regular left-back at Chelsea, saying that he would "hope to see him there" in the future.

image: © ingythewingy

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