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A Saint looking for redemption

VERSATILE: Redmond

IT’S BEEN a season of two halves for Southampton’s Nathan Redmond. Despite some positive performances for the South Coast club before Christmas, in recent weeks he has fallen out of favour with boss Mauricio Pelligrino and has been forced to make appearances from the bench.

It has been a disappointing campaign for the club so far and the forward has not found the form to match his impressive first season at St Mary’s. Often a creative spark on the wing, the 23-year-old, at his best, is tenacious and loves to run at defenders.

WORKING

Versatility is another of Redmond’s strength as he is capable of switching from the left to right wing for the Saints, working as part of their forward three. He is also capable of whipping in a tempting cross from either flank, and his signature move is cutting inside for a shot after a pacy run.

Once touted as a hot prospect in the Premier League, Redmond needs to find a way back into the starting XI and add more goals to his game to push on to the next level. It’s easy to forget that the winger is still a youngster after already running up over 200 career appearances in successful spells in England’s top two divisions with three clubs.

ACADEMY

Having come through the academy at his hometown club, Birmingham City, Redmond broke into the first team in 2010. His debut in the League Cup, aged 16, made him the Blues’ second youngest ever player. In three years at St Andrews he scored seven goals in 62 senior outings, earning interest from Premier League clubs and a subsequent move to Norwich City in 2013.

Redmond’s first season in Norfolk ended with relegation and just one goal in 34 league appearances, however the Canaries didn’t linger in the Championship, securing promotion to bounce straight back up to the top flight. In that season he notched an impressive 43 league appearances, as well as scoring key goals in the play-off semifinals and final against East Anglian rivals Ipswich and Middlesbrough respectively.

On Norwich’s return to the Premier League, Redmond continued to play an integral role, scoring six goals in 35 league outings – enough to catch the eye of then Southampton boss Claude Puel. A rumoured £10 million price tag looked to be a wise investment by the Saints as Redmond hit the ground running and scored eight goals in his first season in red and white – his highest goal tally for a season so far.

In the same season he beat team mate James WardProwse to be voted England’s Under-21 Player of the Year for 2016, crowning a steady progression through England’s youth set up. His performances were rewarded with his first England senior team call up in March 2017, as he came on as a substitute in a friendly against Germany.

CAMEO

After a challenging season at St Mary’s, Redmond will be hoping to find some late season consistency and play more than a cameo role for club and country, especially with the 2018 World Cup on the horizon.

Nancy Frostick is a student on the MA Digital and Newspaper Journalism course at Nottingham Trent University, the Times Higher Education University Of The Year

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