Saints are being linked with a move for Leeds United central defender Pontus Jansson, but it will be complicated. 

The press are suggesting that Saints will make a move for Leeds United’s on-loan central defender Pontus Jansson in the summer as the new partner for Virgil Van Dijk. The rumours have been so prevalent around Elland Road that the player himself took to Instagram to assure Leeds fans he was still committed to the club.

But the deal will be far from easy to do, firstly Jansson is only on loan at Leeds, he is still contracted to Italian club Torino, the Yorkshire club have a clause in the loan deal to buy Jansson for £3.5 million in the summer, but the first thing that Leeds fans need to realise is as we found out with Toby Alderweireld, it is fine to have a clause to buy a player, but you can’t enforce it unless the player agrees to actually sign.

At the moment Leeds promotion bid is stalling, they dropped out of the play off spots on Monday and although they are still level on points with Fulham who jumped above them, the London club have a 9 goal advantage in terms of goal difference and have scored 22 goals more, this is worth a point.

Leeds will feel that their run in is fairly easy in the last three games so perhaps might still fancy their chances especially as Fulham have to visit fellow play off hopefuls Huddersfield and Sheffield Wednesday in the run-in and if Leeds are to have any hope of hanging on to Jansson they need to be back in the Premier League.

Reports suggest that Leeds will complete the clause for £3.5 million and then sell to Saints for £10 million if they are not promoted, however it may not be as simple as that.

There is talk that he has already signed a pre-contract agreement on a three year deal that will officially come into effect in July but how hard and fast this contract would be could be open to interpretation if the player suddenly decides he does not want to go.

In the scenario the player prefers to go to St. Mary’s rather than Elland Road then he will be under pressure to go there directly from Torino and not via Leeds. Firstly, the Italian club would much prefer to get £10 million for the player than £3.5 and secondly if the player moves directly then he can negotiate a bigger signing on fee and deal than he might get if money that could be paid to him is paid to Leeds.

So there is a long way to go on this one both on and off the field.

Jansson at 26 is no spring chicken and he falls into the category of a player who showed early promise but whose career has gone off track in the past few years, initially he starred for IFK Malmo in his home country of Sweden leading for him to leave the club in the summer of 2014 after running his contract down and join Torino.

But his time in Italy has not been great and he has failed to hold down a permanent place in the starting XI leading to being loaned out to Leeds lat summer where he has once again found his frm of old.

He has 12 caps for Sweden and went to Euro 2016 although he did not get on to the pitch.

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