Southampton Step up Pursuit of Manchester United Striker Javier Hernandez

Southampton are looking to replenish their squad with the potential signing of 26-year-old Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez. The out of favor man has been targeted by new manager Ronald Koeman.

Chicharito is not the only Manchester United player that Koeman is keeping tabs on, with the Dutchman looking to add another Louis Van Gaal reject, winger Wilfred Zaha. Hernandez and Zaha both were among the players who were told by Van Gaal this weekend that they would need to find new clubs elsewhere.

According to the Mirror, Southampton would prefer to buy Hernandez on a permanent deal, but would go the loan route if a deal fell through. The striker’s price tag is valued at around £9.5 million, so the Saints would be expected to make a bid for him in that general range. Despite the club’s optimism, Southampton are not the only available option for Hernandez. Inter Milan and La Liga defending champions Atletico Madrid are also vying for the Mexican’s signature.

Hernandez was signed by Manchester United during the summer of 2010. After an effective World Cup with Mexico (where he netted twice), he joined the club with a great confidence boost.

With Wayne Rooney in the lineup, Hernandez had a limited number of starts but made his greatest impact in the role of “super-sub.” He first fulfilled that role in the Community Shield at the beginning of that season, when he scored in their victory over Chelsea. He ended up finishing that season with 20 goals in all competitions, and his highlights included scoring against Chelsea again in both the Champions League and the Premier League. At the conclusion of the season, Hernandez also won the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year from the club’s supporters.

Throughout his other three seasons at Old Trafford, he has not put up stats like his first term, but he has contributed some big goals for the club. His brace against Braga to complete a late comeback in the 2012-13 Champions League, and his goal to complete the unforgettable comeback against Chelsea from the 2011-12 Premier League come to mind. But despite this, Hernandez’s minutes began to dwindle, and transfer talks began to include his name.

At his height, Hernandez was likened to former Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer due to both their natural goalscoring tendencies and their values as substitutes. If Southampton were to complete the signing of Hernandez, he would now cast a positive glare in the club’s summer transfer window. For a club that has undergone a mass exodus such as Southampton, a quality signing such as Hernandez would help them rebuild.