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Southampton are close to signing the most wanted midfielder in English football

Maddison had a fantastic campaign in the Championship and it was a matter of time before someone picked him up

Southampton are on the brink of pulling off the shock signing of Norwich City’s highly-rated 15-goal midfielder James Maddison, according to The Sun.

SunSport can reveal Saints have had a £20million-plus offer accepted by the Canaries for the 21-year-old who romped last year’s Player of the Year award.


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Southampton are closing in on a deal for James Maddison

PA:Press Association
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Southampton are closing in on a deal for James Maddison

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Maddison has been targeted by a string of Premier League clubs after enjoying an outstanding season in the Championship.

Leicester City were odds on favourites with bookies to win the chase for the England Under-21 star who has also been linked with moves to Spurs, Everton, West Ham and Fulham.

However sources close to the Carrow Road club say Saints boss Mark Hughes has been given permission to talk to the youngster after meeting the Championship club’s valuation for their star midfielder tonight.

The England Under-21 star’s vision and creative spark saw Maddison provide more ‘key passes’ (2.8 per game) than any other player in the Championship last season.

The Norwich ace will cost upwards of £20million

Reuters
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The Norwich ace will cost upwards of £20million

His stock soared in January when it was revealed he had created 54 chances for Norwich – more than any player in the Premier League, Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A and Ligue 1

Since then it has just been a matter of time before the Canaries’ prized asset stepped up to the Premier League where a clutch of clubs battled for the signature of one of England’s top young talents.

However Hughes now looks to be closing in on Maddison after 48 hours of tough negotiations with Norwich.

The ace could arrive as a replacement for Sofiane Boufal, who looks set for a return for France with either Marseille or Nice.

Southampton boss Mark Hughes was keen to wrap up the move as quickly as possible

PA:Press Association
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Southampton boss Mark Hughes was keen to wrap up the move as quickly as possible

Maddison could arrive as a replacement for Sofiane Boufal

PA:Press Association
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Maddison could arrive as a replacement for Sofiane Boufal

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