Saints clinch Forster capture
11:50pm Saturday 9th August 2014 in © Press Association 2014
England goalkeeper Fraser Forster has left Celtic for £10million as Southampton continue to strengthen after a summer of departures.
This has been a tough few months for those connected with the south-coast club, with a host of players exiting St Mary's in the wake of manager Mauricio Pochettino's departure to Tottenham.
England internationals Luke Shaw, Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana were among those to leave for pastures new, leading to the term 'meltdown' being bandied around.
However, those exits have swelled the coffers and Saints made Forster their fifth summer signing on Saturday, with the Celtic goalkeeper moving for a fee understood to be in the region of £10million.
The 26-year-old has penned a four-year deal at St Mary's, where he will compete with Artur Boruc - another former Bhoys goalkeeper - for the number one spot.
"Fraser is a very talented player and we are delighted to be able to bring him to Southampton," manager Ronald Koeman told the club's official website, www.saintsfc.co.uk.
"This is another important part of our rebuilding process ahead of the start of the season."
Forster links up with former Celtic team-mates Victor Wanyama and Jos Hooiveld at Southampton, where he will also work with England goalkeeping coach Dave Watson.
"The fact that he has worked with Dave Watson before means we already know all about his strengths and weaknesses, and I am confident that we will be able to help him improve even further," Koeman added.
"Fraser is the perfect fit to help complement the players we already have and he will add a lot of quality to the squad.
"He is an exciting English player with a very good reputation within the game and, at 26, he will enjoy the best years of his career at Southampton."
Forster is unlikely to be the last acquisition made by Saints before the end of a transfer window which has seen the core of last season's successful side decimated.
Lambert, Lallana and Dejan Lovren have moved onto Liverpool, while Calum Chambers exited for Arsenal and teenager Shaw moved to Manchester United.
Talk remains over the futures of Morgan Schneiderlin and Jay Rodriguez with Tottenham interested, but the club have made it clear to both players they will be staying.
Saints chairman Ralph Krueger told Press Association Sport this week that the club was now "building and not in a reducing phase", with Saphir Taider joining from Inter Milan the following day in a season-long loan which saw disruptive club-record signing Dani Osvaldo go the other way.
Taider's move is with a view to a permanent deal, like the recent move that brought Ryan Bertrand from Chelsea, while Koeman has signed Graziano Pelle from former club Feyenoord and FC Twente's Dusan Tadic.
Saints are now trying to complete deals for Sporting Lisbon's Marcos Rojo and Florin Gardos of Steaua Bucharest, while Koeman confirmed on Saturday that Leeds had rejected their bid in the region of £4.5million right-back Sam Byram.
"We lost Chambers to Arsenal - it (Byram) was a player we had on the list and it's true that we had a bid for him, yes,'' the Dutchman said after the 1-0 friendly loss to Bayer Leverkusen.
"What I heard was that Leeds didn't accept it."