George Boateng believes that his once team-mate Ronald Koeman will be able to attract the players Southampton need after losing star names.

The Saints will be without captain Adam Lallana and star striker Rickie Lambert next season with both players set to line up for Liverpool, while teenage prodigy Luke Shaw will also no longer be on the South Coast after joining Manchester United.

To make matter worse, defender Dejan Lovren and star midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin may also leave, which would give the Dutchman a difficult task to build on the success of last season.

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But Boateng – who played alongside Koeman at Feyenoord – feels that the 51-year-old has the pulling power to attract top names to the club to replace exiting stars:

“I always knew Ronald would be a great manager,” he told talkSPORT. “He’s done a tremendous job at Feyenoord over the past few seasons with a limited budget, but it will be a tough job for him at Southampton.

“The good thing about him is that he is very international, he played for Barcelona and managed Valencia in Spain, he’s managed at Benfica in Portugal and also at Ajax and Feyenoord in Holland.

“His pedigree is right up there and his international awareness of players in very good.

“What Southampton should also be happy about is that he can get players who are now playing at the World Cup, he can attract those names to the club.

“And I’m sure that, with the right funds, he will find and sign the right players for Southampton.

“He’s a very clever, and astute guy and I have faith he’ll do well in the Premier League.”

Koeman may end up with a budget of close to £100m with key first-team players exiting.

The Magic Sponge