The three signings that make Saints Summer business a success!

There has been much made of whether or not Saints have had a ‘successful’ Summer transfer window or not, and on the face of it, losing Morgan Schneiderlin and Nathaniel Clyne was always going to make it difficult to convince a lot of the fanbase that it could be anything other than a failure.

Lots of people have raised concerns recently about the clubs policy of replacing the outgoing players with cheaper alternatives, and this coinciding with a poor start on the pitch meant people’s worries were seriously heightened.  I don’t pretend to be completely comfortable with it myself but talk of relegation and impending doom is way too early. With the confirmation on deadline day that Saints had ended the window as the  Premier League’s ‘net spend’ winners you have to say that if Ronald Koeman can get his team back to form and have another decent showing come the end of the campaign, then we perhaps have the shrewdest owners in football.

It is still too early to tell just how good or bad the incoming players are, but for me these three signings give Saints fans good reason to be optimistic.

  1. Jordy Clasie

I was a little put out by the lack of fuss the English media made of this signing, and in my opinion it was somewhat of a coup. Let’s be honest, if Koeman wasn’t in charge, Saints are never signing this player. You can’t take too much notice of supporter born superlatives, but the ‘Dutch Xavi’ is highly regarded in Holland and was long the subject of interest from Manchester United. Many people have said that they don’t see him as an adequate replacement for Schneiderlin, well let me put it to you that he isn’t here to be that. I think he is seen as a replacement for Steven Davis, sitting in front of the defensive midfield two and dictating play. Davis has done little wrong in a Saints shirt, but I see Clasie as a step up and it was gutting to see him pick up an injury so early into the campaign.

Clasie operator.
Clasie operator.

 

2. Oriol Romeu

If we are talking about Schneiderlin replacements, Spaniard Romeu is the man with that huge task on his hands in my opinion. The former Barcelona youth/B teammate of Messi, Fabregas et al looked to have made his breakthrough at Chelsea under Andre Villas-Boas but proved less popular with subsequent managers in West London and found himself one of the many victims of the Stamford Bridge Footballer borrowing library. Romeu has already proved to be a competent and combatant competitor in defensive midfield and could prove to be a steal at just £5 million. If Victor Wanyama can get over himself and forge a partnership with Romeu it will likely be one of the toughest in the division.

Loves a tackle...
Loves a tackle…

 

3. Virgil van Dijk

When the fallout of the farce involving Toby Alderweireld was that the Belgian had proved himself to be just another of football’s snakes, Saints fans were rightly worried about the lack of options at centre half. With many still untrusting of Maya Yoshida (though in my opinion he has been outstanding of late) and Florin Gardos both untested and then joining the long term injury list there was a clear gap in the squad. With all due respect to him, the loaning of Steven Caulker did little to appease that feeling, so the drawn out abut ultimately successful pursuit of Dutchman van Dijk was a nice way to round off the Summer window. I have high hopes for this transfer.van Dijk is a classy ball playing centre half and although there are no guarantees in football I think he will successfully make the step up. The lure of the Premier League has already improved his international prospects, having been called into the Dutch squad on Thursday and the incentive for him to stay there is to prove a hit in a better league.

Two Saints looking for more regular appearances in Orange!
Two Saints looking for more regular appearances in Orange!

Chris

7 thoughts on “The three signings that make Saints Summer business a success!”

  1. Good stuff although I disagree with putting all the blame on Alderweireld over his move. The pre contract arrangement was obviously not binding and Atletico exploited this when ‘you know who’ jumped in and offered a sum nearer what T.A. was worth. Levy actually acted, while we sat here complacently thinking we were going to get him for ‘on the cheap’. By the time Les Reed woke up, Alderweireld’s mind had been turned, the deal was done. It appeared to me that our Director of Football naively relied on a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ and therefore bears most of the blame. Atletico acted less than ethically but I believe that if we’d have read the signs correctly and put in an early bid for sensible money Alderweireld would be a Southampton player today.

  2. Very good article . Have to congratulate you on your opinion of Yoshida ,he’s not half as bad as cynics make out in fact at times he’s looked calmer and stronger than Fonte

  3. I have to add in that Stekelenberg is one of the most important signings for us. Can you imagine having Davis and Gazza as our keepers?

    I think he has been great so far. Really happy that he has found his form again. I like the boy.

    Let’s not forget we have a goalkeeper who played in the world cup final!!!

  4. All spot on there. Totally agree on Toby being the designer of his own exit. We were willing to pay the same a Spurs but he was attracted like a moth to the bright lights of London. I hope he suffers a similar fate for that to the average moth and enjoys Spurs two years of underachievement and MKDons football. Still, van Dijk probably represents fundamentally better value and will have a far greater commercial value.
    Romeu has been impressive and I think Clasie is just what we need as Davis impact in matches diminishes.
    The only thing that I have found frustrating is that the arrival of Clasie may well be the real reason why Koeman so steadfastly refuses to let Reed get on the pitch and let him establish himself this season. The talk of loaning him to aa Championship club is bonkers. To the extent, I would argue, that not playing Reed was a factor in ending our Euro adventure when Wanyama lost it and also our loss to Everton who Reed shackled so effectively last season.

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