SOUTHAMPTON are racing to try to wrap up the permanent signing of Kyle Walker-Peters to avoid another of their Premier League rivals snatching the defender from under their noses.
Walker-Peters has made a big impact on the South Coast since joining the club on loan from Tottenham in January but that deal did not give them an automatic right to buy.
Kyle Walker-Peters has impressed during his loan spell at Southampton from Tottenham[/caption]
And with Spurs ready to flog the 23-year-old right-back for £10million to bring in some much needed funds, his form for Saints has caught the eye of several teams in the top flight.
Boss Ralph Hassenhutl now sees the right-back as his first choice and feels he provides the much-needed defensive nous his team had been lacking in that position.
So he wants the club to act quickly to wrap up a long-term deal to avoid Walker-Peters having his head turned by other offers.
Though Spurs are short of cover at right-back for Serge Aurier, Jose Mourinho has ruled out bringing Walker-Peters back into the fold next season.
With money tight in North London, Mourinho will have to finance any spending by selling squad players and the academy product is one of those surplus to requirements.
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Walker-Peters burst on the scene during the 2017/18 season, where he was named as the man of the match in the opening weekend’s victory away at Newcastle.
But he has found opportunities hard to come by since then, featuring in just 24 games in all competitions in three years.
He has already made seven top-flight appearances with the Saints, compared to just three at Spurs this season prior to his loan switch.