Romeo Lavia hoping to develop at Southampton after leaving Manchester City

Southampton have completed the signing of 18-year-old midfielder Romeo Lavia from Manchester City.

Saints have announced the Belgium Under-21 international has signed a five-year deal at St Mary’s Stadium.

Lavia is the club’s fourth signing of the summer after goalkeepers Gavin Bazunu and Mateusz Lis, and defender Armel Bella-Kotchap.

Lavia, who joined City from Anderlecht at the age of 16, made his senior debut for Pep Guardiola’s side against Wycombe in the Carabao Cup last season. He went on to make a further first-team appearance as a substitute against Swindon in the FA Cup.

Saints manager Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “Romeo is an extremely talented young player at the start of his career who is open-minded and wants to learn and develop his game with us.

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“We are very excited to sign him ahead of many other interested clubs. It proves that we have a positive reputation for improving young players, which we have worked hard to build up over the years.

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“Romeo is coming from one of the best teams in the world, learning from the best manager and the best players.”

Lavia won Premier League 2 twice during his time with City’s elite development squad but is now relishing the new challenge.

He said: “I’m really delighted to join this club. I think this club has a really good culture with young players, so I’m really happy to be here.

“When I heard of the interest of Southampton I was buzzing because there’s an opportunity for young players to develop as much as possible and I’m very excited.”

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