LONDON (Reuters) - Southampton completed their second loan deal of the transfer window when Serbia’s Filip Djuricic joined the Premier League high-flyers from Benfica on Monday.
The 23-year-old attacking midfielder arrives at the south coast club for the last 15 games of the season as they try and hold on to fourth spot and qualify for the Champions League.
Saints manager Ronald Koeman said he had been tracking Djuricic since his days at Dutch club Heerenveen.
”I know the player from Holland,“ Koeman told Southampton’s YouTube channel. ”He played several seasons for Heerenveen and then he moved to Benfica.
“He had some good games, there was a lot of interest in the player when he was at Heerenveen. He moved to Portugal and now it’s a good chance for the player to develop himself.”
Koeman will hope Djuricic has a similar impact to Eljero Elia who was signed on loan from Werder Bremen last month and has already made his mark at Southampton.
“It’s difficult for young players to make the step to teams like Benfica, it’s physical football in Portugal and the player is more technical,” Koeman said.
“I think it’s better for him to play in a team like Southampton because our type of football is the best for Djuricic.”
Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Tony Jimenez