Saints fans will instantly assume that the Senegalese international is a direct replacement for Morgan Schneiderlin, should the Frenchman move on this summer, but there are differences between the two players.
Ever since making his debut in a cameo appearance against Marseille in 2010 at the old Stade Lille Metropole, Gueye has grown in stature and is now one of the best players at the club.
Starting as a purely defensive midfielder, Gueye's game has expanded as he has gained experience and maturity. Still just 25 years old, he has blossomed into an energetic box-to-box midfielder, able to play different roles, without losing any quality.
At times he is asked to play as the deepest of three central midfielders and he patrols the pitch with authority. Gueye reads the game well and is well disciplined.
His best position is when he is allowed to play a little further forward. Lille played 4-3-1-2 - in a diamond midfield, and Gueye is superb at playing on the left-hand side, pushing the Lille team forward and getting involved in both the attacking and defensive side.
This season he has shown more of his attacking attributes, scoring four times in 34 games. Each strike showcased his big game mentality, his first in the derby against Lens and then goals against Marseille at the Stade Velodrome and the opener as Lille beat the then league leaders Lyon 2-1 at the Stade Pierre Mauroy.
For the reported €10 million fee being mooted, Southampton would be signing a very exciting player, still at the stage of his career where he can grow and improve further.
Lille will be sad to see him leave, but that money will help pay for their transfer dealings this summer.
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