Southampton have been without captain Ryan Bertrand in recent weeks following surgery on a back injury, with Matt Targett deputising in his place.
There was certainly no guarantee that the more senior man was going to remain at St Mary’s during the summer following the narrow escape from relegation to the Championship, but seemingly either no bids arrived for the £70,000-a-week player, or no club was willing to meet the south coast outfit’s valuation of the 29-year-old.
Instead, the England international skippered Saints in the early months of an unsuccessful campaign under Mark Hughes, and certainly wasn’t at his best – as he arguably hasn’t been since Ronald Koeman left in 2016 – as the team struggled with his leadership leaving plenty to be desired.
Meanwhile, academy graduate Targett would have been hopeful of establishing himself as a starting XI regular following his successful loan spell with Fulham last term in which he helped them win promotion to the Premier League, but instead he has largely had to be patient waiting for his opportunity.
The 23-year-old has since started five of the previous six top-flight fixtures under new boss Ralph Hasenhuttl, and while the defensive side of his game perhaps needs some help he produced a sumptuous cross that Danny Ings headed in during the 3-2 win against Arsenal at St Mary’s earlier this month.
Despite that, we at Football FanCast still believe Bertrand’s experience and quality mean that he still has plenty to offer Southampton and has the potential to get back to his best under the Austrian manager, and therefore the club shouldn’t consider cashing in on him in January.
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Check out the video below for Emma Conybeare’s rundown of which clubs need what in the January transfer window…