Southampton are ahead of Everton in their pursuit to sign Sporting CP defender Ruben Semedo, according to reports in Portugal, and could be in pole position to land him this summer.

A report from the printed version of Portuguese news outlet Record today, as cited by Sport Witness, claims that Sporting are certainly willing to offload their young defender and Saints are one of three Premier League teams keen.

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It’s stated that Saints are leading the chase for Semedo, but Ronald Koeman’s Everton and Stoke City are also looking to move in for him this summer.

Semedo has been a long-term target for Saints, and the eighth-placed Premier League side have been cited with interest for well over a year now.

The Sporting defender has a buyout clause of €45m but it is, of course, likely that any potential suitors will be able to recruit him for a lower fee.

It is, in fact, stated by Record that Sporting will listen to offers of above €15m, which could certainly prove to be a reasonable fee for Saints.