Southampton are in advanced negotiations with Lille for the signature of midfielder Sofiane Boufal after placing an improved bid in recent hours.

The Saints have been on Boufal’s trail for some time, but Lille showed little enthusiasm for their initial bid of €14m, which was considerably less than the player’s asking price.

However, Southampton have wasted little time in slapping in a new bid of €20m, and according to French sports daily L’Equipe, the club are in the final stretch of talks with the Ligue 1 outfit.

Southampton officials had a further round of negotiations over Boufal’s move to England last night, and were finalising the minute details, including a €1m bonus payment, with Lille.

The south coast club have offered a pay package of €2.8m per season to the attacking midfielder and are hopeful of closing out a final agreement as soon as possible.  


Premier League champions Leicester have lodged a late enquiry for Boufal with Lille, but Southampton are way ahead of the Foxes in terms of negotiations and are pole position to land the Moroccan.

Tottenham have also been interested in the player, but they are yet to make any concrete move for him, leaving the pathway open for Southampton to finalise the deal.

Boufal has a contract until 2019, and was prepared to wait until January if his suitors didn’t match his asking price, but it seems Southampton are closing in on a deal for him with Lille.