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Reports: Southampton's striker Pablo Dani Osvaldo has not yet reported for pre-season training

FEATURED COLUMNIST
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22 Jul 2014, 18:30 IST
Dani Osvaldo
Dani Osvaldo joined Southampton last season from AS Roma for a club record transfer fee of £12.9m

Southampton’s record signing, Italian Dani Osvaldo has gone AWOL after it was reported that he missed the club’s pre-season training. The Saints must now be wondering what made them pay a club record transfer fee of £12.9m on the eccentric Italian forward.

In December last year, the ex-Roma man was banned for three matches and fined £40,000 for a major part in a touchline clash against Newcastle. A month later he allegedly head-butted teammate Jose Fonte in training, was suspended by the club and told that he would never play for them again.

Loan spell at Juventus

This was followed by the south coast club loaning the maverick back to his native Italy, to Juventus with an option to make the deal permanent at the end of the deal.

However, the Turin giants didn’t pick up the option after the striker had a fruitless six months back in Serie A, scoring only one goal during his stay at the club.

Osvaldo was due at St. Mary’s to begin his pre-season training with Southampton, but has been a no show as Ronald Koeman’s men prepare to jet off to Belgium for some pre-season friendlies.

Southampton’s striker issues

Southampton have been depleted on all fronts with Adam Lallana, Luke Shaw and Rickie Lambert departing the team along with manager Mauricio Pochettino.

The signing of Italian striker Italian striker Graziano Pelle and Dusan Tadic were Koeman’s first steps to bolster the squad. However, the Dutchman must still try to strengthen the Saints’ forward line with Osvaldo’s future looking bleak at St. Mary’s.

Southampton are believed to back their academy product Sam Gallagher in addition to Jay Rodriguez’s continuous development to pull them through this season.

Osvaldo a repeat offender

This is not the first time that Osvaldo has missed time with the team. Back in the December of 2012, Osvaldo tried to forfeit participating in AS Roma’s winter retreat to the US by producing fake medical reports.

This led to a souring of relations between him and the club and prompted the sale of the forward to Southampton in the summer.

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