Chelsea tracking progress of Southampton prospect Matt Targett - report

Chelsea are starting to show signs of interest in Southampton defender Matt Targett.

Such is the reputation of Southampton's youth-academy it doesn't take long until the biggest clubs in England begin to show their interest in any up-and-coming talent breaking through. 

The Saints have seen the likes of Adam Lallana, Luke Shaw, Calum Chambers, Gareth Bale, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott all graduate from their academy-system in recent times to become Premier League stars and they are becoming victims of their own success.

The conveyer belt of talent coming out of St. Mary's means that many of the high-profile teams in the Premier League are keen to sign any emerging prospects the club may have.

The latest player to make the step-up from the youth-team to the senior squad is Matt Targett and Chelsea are already tracking the defender's progress.

According to a report in the Daily Mirror, the 19-year-old has been identified as one to watch by Blues' scouts and is already of interest to the current Premier League leaders. 

Southampton, though, intend to stave off any speculation about Targett's future by offering him a new five-year-deal to stay at the club.

The Saints are determined not to have a repeat of last summer again, where they lost a clutch of their key players, and want to secure their prized possessions' futures. 

Targett certainly falls into this category, even if his career is only starting to take shape.

The left-back has made four appearances for the club this season, in all competitions, and the Saints have won in every match he has played so far. 

Targett's solid defending matched with his ability to provide a threat going forward makes him an exciting prospect for the side and Ronald Koeman will be looking to continue giving him first-team opportunies as the season progresses.

At the moment his chances of displacing Ryan Bertrand at left-back look limited, with the loanee's form exceptional, but there is hope that the England youth international can be the club's long-term option in the position, if he continues to develop at his current rate. 

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch