Roméo Lavia has been a hot topic since the transfer window opened, with many reports stating clubs like Arsenal, Liverpool, and Chelsea are interested in the 19-year-old Southampton midfielder. His price tag is rumored to be set at around £45 million.
Manchester City also has a release clause that can be triggered for £40 million, which can be triggered starting in 2024.
With Southampton being relegated last season, the Belgian will likely be shifted out of the club if the right offer comes in.
Why are so many clubs interested?
Lavia is usually deployed as a number six, in either a pivot or as a lone six. He possesses abilities that show he has the potential to become grow into a top talent as he develops as a player. When it comes to build-up play, Lavia is comfortable dribbling with the ball to make space for his teammates and select the right pass under pressure.
Alongside this, he likes to put a challenge in and dispossess the opposition on the ball. Lavia wins 2.2 tackles per 90 compared to the average midfielder at 1.8 per 90. Furthermore, the Belgian youngster is a player that likes to carry the ball and progress across the pitch, and is not one to be dispossessed easily.
— Squawka (@Squawka) June 29, 2023
Lavia played a total of 2,230 minutes in the Premier League last season, more than the likes of Jordan Henderson and Casemiro at just 19 years old.
He has the raw attributes of a dominant number six, and with the right coaching and development, he will become a monster in the midfield. He has already shown snippets of what he can do throughout last season. Lavia has shown that he is fearless to the challenge and has adapted at a rapid rate to senior football, playing his first full senior season last season.
Throughout his time at Manchester City, Lavia learned from footballing greats like Fernandinho. He explained in an interview that “Fernandinho knows what he’s doing – he doesn’t run just to run. He’s like the brain of the team. When you’re young you want to run – left, right – but he knows what he’s doing so he won’t run as much, but will still be effective. That’s something I keep learning from him.”
@RomeoLavia Congrats on the first goal as professional bro.
Great game and great win.👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👊🏾👊🏾👊🏾👊🏾
— Fernandinho (@fernandinho) August 30, 2022
There is no doubt he made the most of their time together at Manchester City, and learned a lot from one of the best in his position.
Is it a risk for the price tag?
Spending £45 million on a 19-year-old could be seen as a risky move. After all, he still has a lot to learn in the world of football, and will make mistakes throughout games. However, the market for players like Roméo Lavia is very small, and his ceiling is very high considering what he already has to offer at such a high level.
With the right players and staff around him, he can develop into an important player for the club he ends up signing for. Clubs will have to act fast, given the buy-back clause Manchester City has in place next year. If he continues to impress, it is likely they will consider bringing him back to the Etihad.