Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl has given his opening assessment of Liverpool forward Takumi Minamino following on from his deadline-day loan move on Monday.
This comes from Hampshire Live. They say that the former RB Leipzig head coach has been very impressed with Minamino following his first week with the Saints.
Minamino, 26, can operate across multiple positions in the forward line, which is beneficial for a Southampton team that have been plagued by injuries in recent weeks.
The Japan international will be hoping for an immediate impact at his temporary home following on from his time at Anfield, where opportunities have so-far been few-and-far between.
He was limited to just two Premier League starts this term, clocking up just 286 minutes of action. To put that into perspective, Virgil van Dijk has clocked up 371 minutes despite not playing since October 17.
However, Southampton manager Hassnhuttl has been impressed with Minamino during his first week at St Mary’s, making an immediate impact under the Austrian coach.
“We have with Minamino a fantastic new player. He showed in the first session immediately that he can help us and that gives us all a lift, an emotional lift,” he said, per HampshireLive.
What RTK has to say – Hasenhuttl and Minamino could be a perfect combination
Southampton could be the perfect for club for Minamino to get his Premier League prospects back on track.
The Saints are fighting for a top-eight finish and have an array of quality players to complement Minamino’s game, including former Liverpool man Danny Ings.
Hassnhuttl likes to play an expansive brand of attacking football that will suit Minamino’s qualities. This is something he benefited from last season with RB Salzburg.
In 22 appearances last term, Minamino clocked up an impressive nine goals and 11 assists in both the Austrian top-flight and Champions League before securing a move to Liverpool.
With the added boost of Minamino, then, Southampton could, once again, become a real force and look to put an end to a miserable four-game winless run.
They are scheduled to take on Newcastle United tomorrow afternoon at St James’ Park. Let’s hope Minamino is entrusted to make his mark on Tyneside.