Southampton have been linked with a summer swoop for Heerenveen defender Kik Pierie. 

According to a report from Calciomercato, the Saints have set their sights on the young centre-back, who has caught the eye with some mature displays in Eredivisie action throughout the season.

Pierie has been a vital player for his team this term and is reported to have attracted interest from Ajax, who have been left impressed by the youngster.

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The 18-year-old has established himself as a regular in Heerenveen’s starting line-up despite his youth, making 24 appearances in the top flight of Dutch football in the ongoing campaign.

Pierie has operated in central defence regularly this season but has also displayed his ability to play as a left-back, making him a versatile option for manager Jan Olde Riekerink. 

Southampton appear to be admirers of the defender as they begin making plans for the summer, but competition from Ajax could prove fierce given their credentials in Dutch football.

Why Pierie could be a smart signing for Southampton