Bristol City could be about to dip their toes into the January transfer window for the first time after taking Ramello Mitchell on trial.
Playing 68 minutes in a 2-2 draw in which a young Robins side surrendered a two-goal lead was the winger.
The beauty of football at age grade level is that teams can take a look at players and run the rule over them.
Mitchell should be expected to play a few more games as City make a decision.
Who has he played for?
The 19-year-old is currently on the books of Premier League outfit Southampton, who have had a good reputation of producing young talent. James Ward-Prowse for example came through their academy and has excelled for the Saints, becoming an England international.
There is also Matt Le Tissier, who made over 500 appearances for the club and was one of the most accurate penalty takers these shores have seen.
Back to Mitchell, he has been with Southampton since 2019 after being signed from Birmingham City for £300,000 on an academy scholarship. At 16-years-old he was excelling for Birmingham’s Under-18’s side.
Before joining the Hampshire side, it was reported by the Daily Mail that Liverpool, Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers all wanted the player.
This season he has played 14 imes in the Premier League 2, scoring one goal.
What position can he play and where would he fit in?
Mitchell’s primary position is as a winger, so he would be an attacking option should he join. What we’ve seen this season is that wing-backs have been favoured over out-and-out wingers. Alex Scott and Ayman Benarous, both centre midfielders by trade have been shoehorned into those roles.
We’ve also seen Callum O’Dowda play in that role whilst Antoine Semenyo has alternated between a winger and a striker this season.
What has been said about him?
With that reported interest from three other Premier League clubs, Saints had to battle hard to get his signature.
Matt Hale, who was Academy director at the time of his arrival, was waxing lyrical about a player with good potential.
“Ramello is an ideal fit and complements our youth programme, in terms of developing players through a long-term pathway at the club,” he said to their official club website after the player signed a professional contract.
“Having already played numerous times in our Under-23s, still as a first-year scholar, it highlights the progress being made by Ramello, supported by the coaches’ efforts on the training pitch.”
How likely could a deal be?
As Southampton have given their permission for City to use the player then it is now up to them whether they want to pursue a deal.
Mitchell’s contract is up at the end of the season and it is this time of year when clubs signal their intentions to players about their long-term futures.
The feeling is that Southampton are willing to let him leave so he could even join on a free transfer.
It’s early days though on whether he’ll get signed as yesterday was the first we were hearing about him.
Alex Ball’s U23s side have another fixture on Tuesday against Charlton Athletic, whilst a week later they play Severnside rivals Cardiff City, so there are two other games for Mitchell to impress the decision makers.