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Southampton are making desperate attempts to locate Agustin Delgado after the Ecuador international striker failed to turn up for pre-season training.

“Delgado has not turned up and we are looking into the reasons,’ said the club’s mannager Gordon Strachan. ‘Once we find out, we will make a further statement.”

Delgado has endured a troubled start to his Premeirship career since his œ3.2m signing from Mexican club Necaxa last November.He played just twice for the club last season before an injury forced him out of the remainder of the campaign. Tension between club and player grew when Delgado opted to return to Ecuador to undergo treatment rather than stay with the club.

Delgado claimed before the World Cup that he would not be returning to Southampton, arguing that he was unhappy with the treatment of his injury and Southampton’s attitude towards him while he was injured.

However, on Monday, he told theEcuador FA website: “I would have liked to have been transferred, but if this has not happened.

“I have to return to Southampton, with the greatest desire that things work out well for the team and for me.”

Ironically, Delgado’s team-mate Cleber Chala arrived at Southampton on time. A œ1.2m signing from Ecuadorian club Nacional, Chala sounded upbeat about the prospect of playing for the Saints.

He said: “I really enjoyed the World Cup and Ifeel I did well although not quite to my full potential and I always want to do better.

“Now the World Cup is over and I have great ambition for the new season and I want to play.”

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