Simon Jones for MailOnline

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Pete Jenson for MailOnline

David Moyes is hopeful of closing a deal for Real Madrid midfielder Asier Illarramendi despite the interest of Southampton.

Sociedad have made a £12m offer to Madrid while Southampton hope to sign him on an initial loan. 

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David Moyes must beat off competition from Southampton if he is to sign Real Madrid's Asier Illarramendi

David Moyes must beat off competition from Southampton if he is to sign Real Madrid’s Asier Illarramendi

The Spaniard is surplus to requirements at Madrid and is caught between a move to Sociedad and England

The Spaniard is surplus to requirements at Madrid and is caught between a move to Sociedad and England

ASIER ILLARRAMENDI FACTFILE

Age: 25

Position: Defensive midfielder

Real Sociedad appearances: 56

Real Sociedad goals: 0

Real Madrid appearances: 90

Real Madrid goals: 3

International caps for Spain:

The defensive midfielder is surplus to requirements at the Bernabeu and is caught between a move back to David Moyes’ Real Sociedad or a switch to the Premier League. 

Liverpool and Tottenham have also looked at the player once dubbed the new Xabi Alonso after emerging from Real Sociedad’s youth system but Southampton have emerged as late contenders.

They lost Morgan Schneiderlin to Manchester United in the summer and Tottenham have targeted Kenyan defensive midfielder Victor Wanyama.

Illarramedi would provide the Saints with a late solution if they were to lose Wanyama. They have also looked at another Real Madrid holding midfielder, the Brazilian Lucas Silva, as well as Barcelona youngster Sergi Samper.

However, Samper does not have Illaramendi’s top-flight experience yet and work permit complications could make signing Silva more difficult.

Real Madrid have plenty of options in defensive midfield after re-signing Casemiro from Porto in the summer and spending £30m on Croatia international Mateo Kovacic from Inter Milan last week. 

Former Manchester United boss David Moyes wants to add the defensive midfielder to his ranks

Former Manchester United boss David Moyes wants to add the defensive midfielder to his ranks

Victor Wanyama (right) has been linked with Tottenham and a reunion with ex-Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino 

Victor Wanyama (right) has been linked with Tottenham and a reunion with ex-Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino 

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