This article is part of Football FanCast’s Opinion series, which provides analysis, insight and opinion on any issue within the beautiful game, from Paul Pogba’s haircuts to League Two relegation battles…
Having strengthened their squad with the additions of Che Adams and Moussa Djenepo – as well as Danny Ings’ permanent move being confirmed – earlier in the summer, it has been a quiet time for Southampton more recently in the transfer market.
The Telegraph reported when they were on the verge of signing Adams that their next priority was a new centre-back, with a wing-back another position mentioned, but with just two weeks until the transfer window shuts there is no sign of anyone yet – or any rumours surrounding potential targets, in fact.
Those three have been frozen out of the club’s pre-season preparations to date, while others that the south coast outfit are reportedly willing to listen to offers for – such as Cedric Soares, Wesley Hoedt, Sofiane Boufal and Fraser Forster – have still been heavily involved with the rest of the first-team squad which perhaps suggests they could still have a future under Ralph Hasenhuttl.
So, if Saints fail to make another addition by the close of play on August 8, what could their 25-man Premier League squad for the 2019/20 season look like?
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Firstly, it’s important to remember that anyone born after January 1, 1998 doesn’t count as part of the list, which automatically excludes Djenepo, Michael Obafemi, Yan Valery and Jake Vokins among others.
As things stand and if no more signings occur, here are the players that could make the Autrian manager’s selection when he has to submit his list following the closure of the transfer window.
That list totals 24 names, which shows there is still room for a new addition over the age of 21 – as long as Austin, Lemina and Carrillo go or aren’t included if they stay.
Hasenhuttl admitted to BBC Radio Solent (11:25) recently that he wouldn’t be scared if he started the new campaign with the squad that he has now, but the overriding feeling among the St Mary’s faithful is that a new centre-back is imperative.
An interesting fortnight ahead, then.