Stats: Graziano Pelle is the perfect replacement for Rickie Lambert

Southampton's latest signing Graziano Pelle is an ideal replacement for Rickie Lambert and outperformed the Englishman in several key areas last season.

Southampton confirmed the signing of Graziano Pelle on Saturday afternoon for an estimated £8million on a three-year deal, and the Italian striker's arrival is one Saints fans can be excited about.

Rickie Lambert left the club for Liverpool last month but the powerful 6ft2 Englishman has been replaced by an even bigger frontman, with Pelle standing tall at 6ft4.

The Italian striker arrives from Feyenoord after two very impressive seasons in the Eredivisie and will look to transfer that form to the Premier League with what will be a new-look Southampton side under Ronald Koeman.

Pelle scored an incredible 55 goals in 66 appearances while at Feyenoord during the past two seasons and outperformed Rickie Lambert in several areas during the last campaign.

  TeamPosAppsGoalsGoal AssistChance Created / appsTotal Scoring Att / appsAerial Won / appsMins
Rickie Lambert Southampton FW 37 13 10 1.43 2.78 1.84 2,816
Graziano Pelle Feyenoord FW 28 23 6 2.04 4.32 4.96 2,503

Lambert appeared in nine more league games than Pelle, but the Italian striker scored ten more goals than the new Liverpool man.

The Eredivisie may not be up to the same standard as the Premier League in terms of quality, but the direct style of play in the division is similar to the top-flight in England and Pelle will hope to benefit from that with The Saints.

The 28-year-old created more chances than Lambert, winning more than three more headers per game as well, and is the perfect man to replace the 32-year-old front-man who has made the switch to Liverpool.

Pelle's best two season's in his career came under Koeman at Feyenoord, and the new Saints boss will want his target man to pick up where he left off, as the new signing scored one and assisted another in Feyenoord's final home game last season.

He joins Dusan Tadic as the second summer signing at St Mary's and more will be arriving before the new campaign kicks off next month as the club look to rebuild a squad following a post-season that has been all about departures.

Much has been made of how The Saints will struggle without stars such as Adam Lallana and Luke Shaw, but in Pelle and Tadic the club have already brought in two quality players that will light up the Premier League if they can reproduce the form shown in the Eredivisie.


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