Southampton remain one of the most competitive teams in the Premier League, despite their largely frustrating season. Despite famous wins, in which the Saints steamrolled their opponents, over Chelsea and Arsenal, the club are lingering in 13th and any notion of a European push looks farfetched.
However, what we know about the South Coast outfit, is that they are more than capable of springing a surprise. They are one of the few teams in the league who are able to beat truly anyone when at their best.
Perhaps things have gone a little stale at St. Mary’s recently. After dealing with such upheaval for two consecutive summers, perhaps players need that constant air of change in order to truly motivate themselves.
If that’s the case, luckily for them, the January transfer market is set to roll right around. With some well thought out additions, Ronald Koeman has every chance of making a late push for the top six in this most unpredictable of seasons.
Who might they be? Well, any of these FIVE might help…
You’ll more than likely associate Southampton with a young and exciting team, and rightly so. In that case, suggesting Jermain Defoe as a potential signing may strike you as a little odd.
However, the 33-year old has never truly settled in at Sunderland it seems, though he remains a wonderful goalscorer at this level. The former England international all but guarantees goals, no matter his age.
While he’s never likely to be the long term option, adding him to the squad to supplement Graziano Pelle could prove a masterstroke. At times, the team risk an over reliance on the suave Italian, burning the player out. When he’s not in the goals Koeman’s side can often look bereft of ideas in the final third.
With no guarantees over Jay Rodriguez returning to form, or Sadio Mane’s long term plans, perhaps adding Defoe as a backup in the short-term is a wise idea.
Victor Wanyama hasn’t really been the same since the failed move to Spurs over the summer, and while he’s not pulling a Dejan Lovren just yet, could certainly use competition.
Oriol Romeu has lost his place to the returning Jordy Clasie and Steven Davis continues to be used in a variety of different positions across the engine room. With all that in mind, perhaps the Saints could use some strengthening in defensive midfield areas.
Malaga’s Ignacio Camacho has been linked with a move to the South Coast after emerging as a highly rated talent in La Liga. At 25 years of age, he has already played over 150 top flight games in Spain, as well as capped at international level by La Roja.
As you might expect from a Spaniard, he’s a fine passer of the ball and more than capable of starting attacks from deep. His ability to read the game is excellent, making him an ideal deep-lying playmaker.
The career of Calum Chambers seems to have somewhat stalled since his £16m to Arsenal in the summer of 2014 and the 20-year old has been linked with a return to the South Coast.
Steven Caulker and Maya Yoshida are not adequate cover for Virgil van Djk and Jose Fonte, considering the immense gulf in class between the pairings. Despite his recent struggles, the England international remains a defender of immense ability and potential.
He is equally adept at right-back, something which may be useful for Koeman. Though summer signing Cedric Soares has helped replace Nathaniel Clyne in an attacking sense, the Portuguese is still suspect when tracking back towards his own goal.
Perhaps a move could be beneficial for all those involved. Saints could bring back a graduate of their famed academy, while Chambers has a better chance of landing regular starting berths as he looks to force his way back into the England squad.
Should decision makers on the South Coast deem the aforementioned Defoe too old to make a move, perhaps Chelsea’s Loic Remy would represent a good alternative.
It seems the Frenchman is proverbially destined to be a backup for the Blues, no matter how great the incompetence of his peers may be. If the Frenchman couldn’t breach Diego Costa’s starting berth earlier this season, he’s got little hope of doing so now he’s back in the goals.
The former QPR and Newcastle possesses the poacher’s instinct desperately required at St. Mary’s at times, as Koeman’s outfit look to convert their usually pretty high possession stats into goals. More agile than Defoe, the 27-year old could even form an effective partnership with Pelle at times.
Though neighbours Brighton are looking like a decent bet to join the Saints in the top tier of the Premier League next term, one of their star players is still being linked with a move away.
England Under-21 star Solly March is reported to have been scouted by the club over recent weeks after a series of impressive performances for the Championship pace setters.
Understood to be valued at around £7.5m by the Seagulls, Southampton’s impressive record of nurturing young English talent could play a major role in the making of this deal. The club currently lack natural wide options and the addition of an exciting home grown prospect would be something suited to the Saints.