Southampton have had a bid of €15 million accepted for Bologna winger Gaston Ramirez, beating off competition from Liverpool and Tottenham.
Uruguay international Ramirez, who was part of the Olympic squad, turned down a move to Tottenham but appears to be keen on a move to the South Coast in a stunning move for the newly promoted side.
Ramirez told Corriere Dello Sport: "They believe in me in every way... and above all I have said that they are going to grow. Southampton is a newly promoted team in the English top flight, but they have the means to stand tall in a few years. And with me they are going to build. It's all very stimulating. Even if it is a little strange."
The 21-year-old scored eight goals in 28 apperances in Serie A last season and revealed that he was offered a deal that was too hard to refuse.
"The truth? I think so, yes, this time," he said when asked if he was about to leave. "Bologna have reached an economic agreement with Southampton. There are only a few details to sort out, but they have found the agreement in principle, and the English club have reached an agreement with me.
"It is an offer that you cannot refuse. They will give me so much money (€2 million net per year and more than €1 million signing-on fee)."
Nicola Cortese, executive chairman of Southampton, is believed to have been key in bringing the youngster to the club from Italy.