Southampton have signed Republic of Ireland goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu from Manchester City.
The 20-year-old, capped 10 times by Ireland and who gained fame last year after saving a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty in a World Cup qualifier in Portugal, has agreed a five-year deal at St Mary’s and becomes Saints’ first signing of the summer.
Bazunu joined City as a 16-year-old after impressing at Shamrock Rovers and although he did not make a first-team appearance for Pep Guardiola’s side, he has gained experience on loan with Rochdale and Portsmouth in League One over the past two seasons.
“I’m delighted to be here. It’s been in the works for a few weeks and I’m really happy that we’ve got everything over the line, and I’m just excited to see what’s ahead,” Bazunu told Southampton’s official website.
“I feel like it’s a place I can come and develop and learn my game. The biggest thing is opportunity – the fact that I can come here and have a chance to play regular football. Just to be given that opportunity to fight for my place is the biggest thing that I could’ve asked for.”
Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl believes Bazunu has “tremendous potential” and will provide competition for places at St Mary’s.
“As a club, we are always on the lookout for young talent and Gavin is a very exciting addition to the squad,” the Austrian said.
“We believe he has tremendous potential to improve and will give us great competition for places in the goalkeeping department.
“He is already an international goalkeeper, which is very rare for his age. Coming from Manchester City, we know he has learned from some of the very best coaches and teammates, and coming here gives him more opportunities to develop his game through playing in the Premier League.”
The Saints later announced the arrival of a second goalkeeper, former Poland youth international Mateusz Lis, who has agreed a five-year deal.
The 25-year-old was a free agent after his contract at Turkish club Altay SK had expired.
Hasenhuttl added: “Mateusz is a player who has a lot of the right attributes we look for in a goalkeeper, and still with his best years ahead of him.
“Of course, it was a priority for us to strengthen this department in the summer, and Mateusz is an important addition who we hope will be able to help us in the future.”
Enjoy the convenience of having The Sunday Post delivered as a digital ePaper straight to your smartphone, tablet or computer.
Subscribe for only £5.49 a month and enjoy all the benefits of the printed paper as a digital replica.Subscribe