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Mauricio Pochettino was right not to spend money for Southampton on transfer deadline day, says Adam Leitch
As Saints fans wake up the morning after transfer deadline day, things look pretty much exactly the same at their club as they were before – and why not?
Mauricio Pochettino has had that vital away time to assess his new squad in Barcelona and has clearly come to the conclusion he has what he requires to keep Saints up.
In truth, whatever you may think about whether that will or won’t happen, his logic is understandable.
Saints have strength in depth in their squad.
There was no need whatsoever to waste money on a player to merely provide cover for a position as they have at least two options for every role.
It could be argued that in a few of them the quality would slide slightly if the first choice was ruled out for whatever reason, but even the biggest clubs with the most cash struggle to counter that problem.
Saints had to get at least one centre half in this window, and they did in Vegard Forren.
The only reason for Pochettino to have dipped into the transfer market yesterday was if he could sign somebody that would instantly improve the Saints first team.
And for that to happen it would almost certainly have meant spending a lot of cash, including an inflated January transfer window fee of course, and nudging out a player who has done well for the club.
Where exactly would you do that?
Some fans were hoping for a goalkeeper, but no club needs four first choice stoppers.
In defence the Forren signing gives them strength, and in midfield there are a plethora of options.
Most of the players to have been linked with Saints have been attacking talents.
Quite simply, it was a window where Saints didn’t really need to splash the cash.
They have enjoyed an upturn in form leading into the window which meant there was little pressure to spend.
They are the team that have been looking like pulling further away from the drop zone.
There was no need for them to panic buy half a new team, or splash out on a player or two in the desperate hope they prove to be the difference between success and failure come the final reckoning.
What we will never know, of course, is whether there was money to spend.
There was obviously interest in Philippe Coutinho but Inter Milan have cooled talk that a formal bid was actually offered by Saints.
It seems more likely it was informal talks surrounding a fee.
There has been a theory that any spending in the January window would be a good indicator of Saints’ finances, but that isn’t really the case.
When that theory first started coming together following the mysterious, largely unquestioned and unexplained document lodged with Companies House some months ago, there was a sense of worry.
Many thought with the team struggling at that stage and Saints seemingly going to be in a position where they needed considerable January strengthening the amount spent, or not, would be an accurate barometer.
As it has turned out, that hasn’t really been the case. Saints can fully justify their lack of spending in January.
And, looking at it from the sidelines, you have to conclude that, while it might be headline grabbing or exciting, they have made the correct decisions on this one ...