Southampton defender Taylor Harwood-Bellis is ‘too good for the Championship’ and the Saints could struggle to keep hold of the centre-back if they fail to earn promotion back to the Premier League, according to journalist Dean Jones.
Harwood-Bellis has been with Manchester City since 2008 but moved to the St. Mary’s Stadium on loan during the summer, the fifth loan spell of his career so far, and has featured 10 times for the club on the south coast this term.
The England U21s international spent all of last season at Turf Moor, playing a massive helping hand in getting Burnley back to the top-flight at the first time of asking under Vincent Kompany, whom he played under at Anderlecht.
Harwood-Bellis’ contract at Man City expires at the end of the season and the 21-year-old is currently worth £21.9 million, according to Transfermarkt. Journalist Dean Jones believes that the only way Southampton will sign the player permanently is if they return to the promised land of the Premier League.
Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, Jones claimed that the defender is too good for the Championship:
“He’s an amazing prospect and I think he is too good for the Championship. I think you have to say fair play to him for even taking this risk by stepping down because he’s had offers to stay in the Premier League. But for a year, he thought this might be the perfect club for him to kind of step out and then step back up again.
“If Saints get to the Premier League, then sure they can go and sign him permanently. But this has to be his only season at Championship level because you’re already seeing that this is a player that is certainly Premier League-worthy.”
It’s unlikely that Harwood-Bellis will have a career at Man City considering the quality and depth that Pep Guardiola possesses in his defensive department.
However, the youngster is certainly good enough to move to the top tier so Southampton may struggle to keep hold of him permanently if Russell Martin’s side remain in the Championship for another season.