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Takumi Minamino joins Southampton on loan from Liverpool

London: Southampton have signed Japanese international Takumi Minamino on loan from English Premier League champions Liverpool for the remainder of the season.

The attacking midfielder completed a switch to St Mary’s on transfer deadline day, joining Ralph Hasenhüttl’s squad for the final months of the 2020/21 campaign.

Comfortable playing both centrally and out wide, Minamino will become the latest Japan international to represent Saints, following in the footsteps of Maya Yoshida most recently.

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He arrives at St Mary’s after making 31 appearances to date for Liverpool and scoring four goals, after joining the Reds in January last year from Red Bull Salzburg.

Minamino shot to prominence during his four-and-a-half years in Austria, winning the league in each season with Salzburg, as his performances proved the catalyst for a move to Anfield, where he was part of another title-winning side during his first campaign.

The 26-year-old started his career with J.League club Cerezo Osaka, where he came through the youth ranks, while also playing regularly at youth level for his country, before graduating to the senior side in 2015.

Minamino has since gone on to make 26 appearances for Japan, scoring 12 times.

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhüttl said in a club statement: “I am very pleased to welcome Takumi to our squad for the rest of this season.

“He will help provide another good attacking option, and is importantly the right profile of player for us. This will give us some additional depth in our squad at an important time, and I am looking forward to beginning work with him on the training pitch.”

Southampton, who are 11th on 29 points in the Premier League, face Manchester United on Tuesday.

Photo: AFP

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