Catch 22 For Southampton/Schneiderlin


So it looks like Southampton and Morgan Schneiderlin are far from being on the same page. This week saw French internationalist Schneiderlin linked with a probable switch to Spurs, only for Saints chairman Ralph Krueger to come out and state that the club had no intentions of selling the midfielder. The twenty-four year old has reacted angrily, launching an attack on his current employers through twitter and supposedly handing in a transfer request.

In ordinary circumstances you might side with the club. They shouldn’t be dictated to by the players. They’ve sold enough first team stars this summer and can’t let Schneiderlin leave as they need him, plus he has five years left on his contract.

But to be fair to Morgan he has sat and watched the club accept bids for five other stars, four of which spent fewer seasons than Schneiderlin at St Mary’s. They too had long term deals.

But the most important factor in all this for me, is what Ralph Krueger said only a few days ago when discussing the summer sales…

“Once you end up with a group with that type of attitude you need to do what is best for the club. We did not make any decision on financial grounds.”

Now surely with a statement like that, he leaves the club open to stars revolting and demanding to leave. Then what does he do? These players could down tools and say their heart isn’t in it anymore. That attitude change won’t be great for club harmony and that £2om plus offer from Tottenham and maybe Arsenal might not look so bad.

I can see why Krueger has come out and rubbished certain claims about the club, he wants to have the fans onside. But he would have probably been best served not mentioning any potential outgoings. If those players are not for sale, then reject the bids for them. But playing it out in the media gives the players and their agents encouragement to do the same.

To be honest, I get both sides.

Southampton are a business and a football club. They have done well getting £88m for the players they sold this summer. They also need a few key personnel to stay on and help with rebuilding the project. The club have also been good for Schneiderlin seeing him flourish, his Premier League exposure helped him gain a spot in the French World Cup squad.

Morgan Schneiderlin can feel a bit harshly done by. He has been a terrific servant for the side, sticking with them in League One and helping them cement themselves as a Premier League club. He probably should have been allowed to leave before the likes of Calum Chambers and Dejan Lovren but who is to say that teams wanted the Frenchman as badly as the others?

If the midfielder has handed in a transfer request, then he is desperate to leave the ‘Saints’. No player hands in a request these days as it usually means forgoing big bonuses.

The club need to nip the problem in the bud as soon as possible. Maybe they can come to an arrangement that they will let the player leave next summer for a certain fee and that Morgan’s agent can offer him around in May 2015.

It will be interesting to see what Ralph and the Southampton board do next as they have an unhappy camper in the squad and they’ve said before that isn’t what they want in the squad.

New manager Ronald Koeman has a big job on his hands to convince both players and fans that he can keep the club going in the right direction.

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