In Focus: Southampton flop Gardos won’t be missed when he leaves in the summer

According to reports in the Daily Echo, £6m Southampton flop Florin Gardos is free to negotiate a move away with his contract unlikely to be extended in the summer.

What’s the word, then?

Well, Saints signed the Romania international in a £6m deal from Steaua Bucharest in 2014, but the 29-year-old has been hampered by injuries throughout his time at St Mary’s and has made just 18 appearances in all competitions, with 11 of those coming in the Premier League.

The centre-back’s contract with the south coast outfit is due to run out in the summer, and according to the Daily Echo the club has no intention of renewing it, meaning the defender can now speak to other clubs about signing a pre-contract agreement deal before the end of the season.

The report adds that Gardos’ teammate Jeremy Pied also finds himself in a similar boat, with an exit likely for him this summer too.

How has Gardos done with Southampton?

It has been a tough three-and-a-half year spell for the Romanian centre-back.

When he initially joined in 2014 he had to battle with captain Jose Fonte and loanee Toby Alderweireld for a place at the heart of the defence, and even when the latter joined Totteham Hotspur he was then replaced by Virgil van Dijk.

Injuries have also played a big part in the 29-year-old being labelled as a flop, although there were some games where he looked as though he had the ability to be a success in the Premier League – he played 69 minutes as the club won 1-0 against Manchester United at Old Trafford in January 2015 and looked more than capable.

Will he be missed?

Probably not, no.

Saints supporters have barely seen enough of Gardos to know whether he is good enough to play for them regularly or not, but given his lack of involvement this season even though he is fit, they probably have their answer right there.

With Wesley Hoedt, Maya Yoshida, Jack Stephens and Jan Bednarek all ahead of him in the pecking order, it is no surprise that he will be on his way out of St Mary’s in the summer.