It’s groundhog day at St Mary’s as two of the Saints’ best players have already left for so-called bigger clubs, while the manager has moved onto a new challenge. Welcome to the world of Southampton, where no one is safe. Despite the constant merry-go-round, fans are still cautiously optimistic – and with good reason. The club is extremely well run and each season since they were promoted in 2012, they’ve managed to improve their league position and their points total despite constantly losing their best playing and coaching staff. Replacing Ronald Koeman, the former manager, is Claude Puel, the former Lille manager who has a track record when it comes to promoting youth.
Meanwhile, Southampton have signed Nathan Redmond from Norwich and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg from Bayern Munich, while replaced Sadio Mane and Victor Wynama have departed. Let’s look at who else will be helping Southampton to points in the league next year, while scoring their own in the FPL.
STAR MAN – Dusan Tadic (7.5m)
While many will be looking at Nathan Redmond to provide some excitement to the Saints’ attack, it’s Tadic who will most likely be the main man. His form towards the end of last season helped Southampton to finish strongly, picking up a lot of fantasy points along the way. He contributed seven goals and 12 assists from 27 starts, and could very well be the main man for them next season.
HIDDEN GEM – Cédric Soares (5.0m)
The Portuguese right-back was in and out of the team last season as he learnt to cope with the demands of Premier League football. However, a strong showing at the Euro’s with Portugal, a competition that they won, along with a fresh start under Claude Puel, means he could be an attacking full back to keep an eye on next season.
BARGAIN OPTION – Sam Gallagher
With Graziano Pelle departing, there’s a real chance for Sam Gallagher to stake his claim in the first team, even though he isn’t available for selection on Fantasy Premier League. He showed some promising signs when he first broke through, but since then minutes at St Mary’s Stadium have been hard to come by. With Claude Puel’s reputation for giving youth a chance, 2016/17 could be the season where Gallagher really makes his mark.
Written by Simon Banks (@snjsbs)