Timothée Kolodziejcak was supposed to be Luke Shaw's replacement, but it looks like he has opted for a move to Sevilla this summer.
When Southampton sold Luke Shaw to Manchester United for £30 million there were numerous names linked with the south-coast club.
He would join Benoit Tremoulinas and Grezgorz Krychowiak in players that have joined Sevilla after spells in Ligue 1 last season, and it’s another great step for the young left-back who would have been a great signing for Southampton after the players they have lost this summer.
Kolodziejczak has been an excellent signing for Nice, joining the club on a free from Lyon in July 2011 under boss Claude Puel. The coach was able to monitor his progress when he was in charge of OL and he obviously saw enough of the defender in training that he wanted to take him to the South of France.
The former France under-21 full-back is tall, strong and quick; everything needed to succeed as a modern-day defender. He is very strong defensively – something that is not always apparent in modern full-backs – and is a threat in the oppositions final third.
Despite his attacking intent, Kolodziejczak has only ever scored twice in his club career, both goals coming this season. The first – a header from a corner - was the opening goal in a 2-2 draw against Montpellier, and was the last ever game played at the Stade de Ray.
He also needs to improve on his final ball, with only five assists delivered over the last two seasons. However, at only 22 years old, there is plenty of time for him to develop further.
Standing at 185cm tall, Kolo – as he is known more commonly – is able to play all over the back-line. He has had to fill in at centre-back at times in the last 12 months and it is something he can do confidently. He is also able to push forward into the attacking roles.
There is little doubt that Kolodziejczak is an excellent prospect. He may have fallen down the pecking order with France due to the success of Lucas Digne and Layvin Kurzawa, but he is a very able left-back with a wonderful engine and a great left-foot.
Sevilla are picking up a great young player and Southampton will have to hope that Kolodziejczak doesn’t go on to great things.