Southampton confirm signing of Celtic attacking midfielder

Southampton have confirmed the signing of Stuart Armstrong from Scottish giants Celtic on a four-year deal.

The Scotland international has joined the Premier League side for a fee believed to be in the region of £7million.

Armstrong’s future at Celtic Park had been in doubt after negotiations over a new contract had stalled, leaving Brendan Rodgers to cash in with just a year to run on his current deal.

The former Dundee United midfielder was part of the Celtic side that won the ‘double treble’ under Rodgers and won a total of eight major trophies during his time at the club.

He scored 17 times in 2016-17 and forced his way into the Scotland setup, but struggled to replicate that form last season after an injury-disrupted campaign.

Armstrong is manager Mark Hughes’ first signing of the summer window after Southampton narrowly survived relegation from the top flight of English football, and the former Stoke boss was keen to add the Scot’s creativity to a squad that scored just 37 goals last season.

Hughes told the club website: “Stuart is a player who we have admired for some time, and I am delighted we have been able to bring him here, especially given the competition we faced to sign him.

“We have strong players in the squad and it is important we build on that by adding different qualities.

“It is important we add a greater goal threat to the team as a whole, and to our midfield specifically, and Stuart’s record of scoring and creating makes him an extremely exciting addition in that area.

“He brings with him extensive experience of European football and has developed his game impressively over the past few seasons at a major club in Celtic, where there is a demand not only to perform but also to win.

“Stuart has done both during his time there.”

Armstrong added: “Southampton seems a really good fit for me. Watching from afar, I really enjoy the attractive football that they play and I’m very happy to be here.

“Every season, I put demands on myself to create and score goals. I hope going forwards from here that it will be the same this term at St Mary’s.”