Southampton just had their best season in history in the Premier League. However, a mass exodus is expected to happen this summer as manager Mauricio Pochettino and fan favourite Rickie Lambert have already left the club.
Southampton are famed for their youth academy and have become known as a selling club over the years, as the likes of Gareth Bale and Theo Walcott have come up through the ranks and then left. To go with this the likes of their up and coming English stars Lallana and Shaw are expected to leave in big money deals, adding to Southampton’s reputation as a selling club.
But how do Southampton compare as a selling club to some of the other “selling clubs” across Europe?
Nathan Dyer £400,000 (Swansea)
Andrew Surman £1.2 million (Wolves)
Alex Oxlade Chamberlain £15 million (Arsenal)
Jason Puncheon £1.5 million (Crystal Palace)
Rickie Lambert £4 million (Liverpool)
While over the last five years Southampton may have only sold five major players and made over £22 million, one must realise that Walcott was sold a few years earlier for £5m which rose to £9m. And of course we cannot forget the fact that ex-Southampton star Gareth Bale was sold for a world record fee.
This trend looks likely to continue for the Saints with transfers for their star players likely to come about over the course of this summer. Captain Adam Lallana is subject to a £25 million bid from Liverpool, while young star Luke Shaw is expected to leave to a bid in the region of £28 million. That’s a staggering £53 million they could make just from two players.
To go with the two likely players to leave, one would imagine Dani Osvaldo will be sold after a very unsuccessful start to his Southampton career, while Gaston Ramirez has been linked with a move back to Italy after two mediocre seasons at St Mary’s.
If one is to believe the rumours going round on the transfer mill, then more transfer bids are coming their way as Liverpool have also been reported to be interested in centre half Dejan Lovren.
Callum Chambers and Nathaniel Clyne have been linked with Newcastle and once Jay Rodriguez comes back from injury, you can guarantee many teams will look to for his signature after an excellent season also.
If all these players are to leave Southampton, for their reported prices, they could be looking at an intake of around £100 million pounds.
Emmanuel Adebayor £25 million (Man City)
Kolo Toure £16 million (Man City)
Eduardo £6 million (Shakhtar Donetsk)
Gael Clichy £7 million (Man City)
Cesc Fabregas £35 million (Barcelona)
Emanuel Eboue £3 million (Galatasaray)
Samir Nasri £25 million (Man City)
Carlos Vela £3.5 million (Real Sociedad)
Robin Van Persie £25 million (Man Utd)
Alex Song £10 million (Barcelona)
Gervinho £8 million (Roma)
Vito Mannone £2 million (Sunderland)
Total: £165.5 million
Over the last five seasons Arsenal have sold 12 players to the value of £165.5 million, along with many free transfers. They will be hoping after finally ending their trophy drought that the exodus will finally end and that they can begin to attract big name players to join the likes of Ozil and Giroud at the club.
Unfortunately, for the Gunners Sagna has decided to turn down a new contract and will leave, and many paper reports are suggesting that Cazorla could leave for Spain, while Podolski’s time does seem to be limited at The Emirates after failing to really break into the first team.
On the plus side for Arsenal, they should really never find themselves in trouble with the financial fair play regulations that are threatening to disrupt some clubs seasons.
Paulo Assuncao €3.5 million (Atletico Madrid)
Lucho Gonzales €18 million (Marseille)
Lisandro Lopez €24 million (Lyon)
Aly Cissokho €15 million (Lyon)
Ibson €5 million (Spartak Moscow)
Bruno Alves €22 million (Zenit St. Petersburg)
Raul Meireles €13 million (Liverpool)
Radamel Falcao €40 million (Atletico Madrid)
Ruben Micael €5 million (Atletico Madrid)
Souza €3.2 million (Gremio)
Nicolas Otamendi €12 million (Valencia)
Joao Moutinho €25 million (Monaco)
James Rodriguez €45 million (Monaco)
Lucho Gonzalez (again) €4.5 million (al Rayyan)
Christian Atsu €4 million (Chelsea)
Total: €256.2 million
As you can see that’s a lot of players to leave a club. Many players left on free transfers during that same period. They will perhaps look back at that Aly Cissokho transfer and laugh now seeing how bad he has turned out with Liverpool last season.
However, the trend looks likely to continue after the World Cup, with French defender Eliaquim Mangala being linked with a host of clubs. Man City has also made it quite clear also that they’re interested in both Fernando and Ricardo, which could accumulate to around €50 million.
Every season star forward Jackson Martinez has been linked with big clubs around Europe and he would more than likely carry a huge price tag. Young star Kelvin is attracting a lot of interest worldwide and one would expect his departure within the next few seasons.
Jonny Heitinga €6 million (Everton)
Jose Manuel Jurado €10.5 million (Schalke)
Elias €8.5 million (Sporting Lisbon)
Diego Forlan € 5 million (Inter Milan)
Tomas Ujfalusi €2 million (Galatasaray)
David De Gea € 21 million (Man Utd)
Sergio Aguero €45 million (Man City)
Jose Antonio Reyes €4.5 million (Sevilla)
Radamel Falcao €60 million (Monaco)
Martin Demichelis €5.5 million (Man City)
Joel Robles €2.5 million (Everton)
Total: €170.5 million
Atletico can look back on their transfer history as good business, as more often than not they have made profit on most players, strangely making over €5 million for Demichelis despite him never having played a game for them.
But despite a fantastic season just gone by, worrying times are ahead for Atletico with many of their title winning team being linked with moves away from the club.
Diego Costa’s £32 million move to Chelsea seems to be set in stone. Chelsea, along with Barcelona are also linked with talented midfielder Koke. That means it is very likely that their two most influential players from last season will be gone.
Chelsea do seem keen to strip Atletico of their squad as Felipe Luis has been linked with a move to London but there has not been much evidence that a move will materialise and goalkeeper Courtois is expected to stay at Chelsea this season. David Villa has already joined new American franchise New York FC.
Kaka €69 million (Real Madrid)
Yoann Gourcuff €13.6 million (Bordeaux)
Klaas Jan Huntelaar €13 million (Schalke)
Marco Storari €4.5 million (Juventus)
Antonio Cassano €5.5 million (Inter)
Thiago Silva €42 million (PSG)
Zlatan Ibrahimovic €20 million (PSG)
Alexandre Pato €15 million (Corinthians)
Kevin Boateng €15 million (Schalke)
Total: €197.6 million
AC Milan find themselves in serious decline after selling all of their big stars and failing to replace any of them. Eventually at this rate they’re bound to have no good players left. Balotelli is expected to leave this summer and up and coming star Stephan El Shaarawy is attracting many suitors and is expected to leave in the year or so.
As you can see, Southampton is not quite as big a selling club as some of their counterparts across Europe. However if this trend continues, it could build a massive gap between the top clubs and the rest if these selling routines continue.
Seán O’Gorman, Pundit Arena.