Why did Saints not flex more financial muscle in the transfer window?

New signing Jonathan Forte

New signing Jonathan Forte

First published in View from the Chapel Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Digital Editor

IT IS QUITE amazing when you think of what football has become.

In the midst of severe austerity measures across not just Britain, but various parts of the first world, football’s bubble has just expanded that little bit more.

The cash paid out for Fernando Torres and Andy Carroll really is mind blowing – to the point where it doesn’t really seem real.

All of a sudden, the £10m various clubs were considering spending on our very own Alex Chamberlain doesn’t seem quite so huge.

It’s a bizarre statement to make, that an eight-figure sum for a 17-year-old playing in the third tier doesn’t seem quite so massive, but if Andy Carroll is worth £35m having scored just 34 career goals, then who knows what to make of anything.

Still, Chamberlain is still here, which can only be a good thing for Saints’ prospects of promotion.

• See what other Saints fans say about the club's transfer dealings

I did say a couple of weeks ago, when it looked as if the winger was about to leave, that £10m (or at least a sizeable chunk of it) would allow Nigel Adkins to really strengthen the squad as a whole, but I’m glad we at still have Chamberlain until at least the summer, if not longer.

As for the new signings, it’s hard to really know what to make of them. N’Guessan seems to have had a decent showing against Exeter midweek, which is promising.

Forte has dropped a division down to come here, which is a good sign – even if we do have our own squad players in the Championship. Adkins will obviously know him well, so we would do well to trust his judgement on the capture.

Leaving aside the long-term deals for Guly, Lallana and Chaplow, who were already here, I can’t help but feel a little bit of extra depth could have been brought in.

Perhaps some extra cover for Lambert for example.

With our supposed financial muscle, Saints have been understated in the signings made this season.

I'm not expecting more million-pound-plus deals like Fonte or Lambert from last season, but the tap does seem to have gone from gushing to dripping between January last year and this.

While our first team is virtually second-to-none in the division, the squad still looks a little light to deal with a gruelling fixture list.

Despite that, there is no reason to not be full of confidence that Saints can power their way out of League One and on to better things.

But a bit more quality in depth would have seen the title far more likely to be here in May.

Comments (13)

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2:00pm Mon 7 Feb 11

lowe esteem says...

I suspect some budget has been used in keeping our two best products on board whilst retaining and adding to the rest of the squad.
I suspect some budget has been used in keeping our two best products on board whilst retaining and adding to the rest of the squad. lowe esteem
  • Score: 0

9:21am Wed 9 Feb 11

ian redhill says...

Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.
Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it. ian redhill
  • Score: 0

10:25am Wed 9 Feb 11

RastaMouse says...

The 49% of income rule kicks in soon too so most clubs in all divisions will have to get the books on track in 3 years, so why would any club spend massively at the moment, when there will be players looking for clubs on lower wages very soon
The 49% of income rule kicks in soon too so most clubs in all divisions will have to get the books on track in 3 years, so why would any club spend massively at the moment, when there will be players looking for clubs on lower wages very soon RastaMouse
  • Score: 0

8:51pm Wed 9 Feb 11

Dan Kerins says...

ian redhill wrote:
Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.
I think you'll find the wage cap (which restricts total amount paid out in wages to 60 per cent of turnover) applies only to League Two.

There was one in League One a few years ago, but was abandoned, to the best of my knowledge.
[quote][p][bold]ian redhill[/bold] wrote: Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.[/p][/quote]I think you'll find the wage cap (which restricts total amount paid out in wages to 60 per cent of turnover) applies only to League Two. There was one in League One a few years ago, but was abandoned, to the best of my knowledge. Dan Kerins
  • Score: 0

11:03pm Wed 9 Feb 11

One Heart....One Vision says...

All I say is...why would Saints splash out silly money on every transfer?. If Bournemouth and Brighton can do well without splashing the cash...why can't Saints?.

At last our Club is being run properly.
All I say is...why would Saints splash out silly money on every transfer?. If Bournemouth and Brighton can do well without splashing the cash...why can't Saints?. At last our Club is being run properly. One Heart....One Vision
  • Score: 0

1:31am Thu 10 Feb 11

PressBoxTeaBoy says...

Well said mate - It's not about the money to buy, it's about talent in spotting talent at the right price and a leadership vision, game plan, playing style, and belief as a confident and well gelled squad. I emphasize SQUAD. All those things now exist at Brighton because of Poyet, and the Chairman Tony Bloom, who is the main reason behind our success. The money helps but thats not the whole game and too much of it often makes for an unbalanced and disjointed affair, with managers being fired every 10 minutes, (Pardew). At Brighton, we tried to sign a couple of players this year and clubs inflated the asking price because we we're league leaders. Poyet told them to stuff it and stuck with what he had, and did better priced deals (Craig Noone, Chris Wood). Money won't be buyng promotion at Brighton. This Journalist talks rubbish though . About the Saints he says - " First team is second to none in Lge 1" ? What ? Are you looking at the League table. He then says "Chamberlain worth 10m" ? What ? Did anyone buy him, he's not worth half that and this was inflated by the local media ? Nobody took the bait. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Southampton talk and act like the world owes them something, a place in a higher world of football perhaps. You have to earn it, and work for it my friends, it doesn't come because you feel your important, and currently Saints have not earned anything, and while your'e all so busy self praising your team and yourselves, the grafters are passing you by. Huddersfield, Bournemouth and Brighton have all earned their current Lge positions and it wasn't because Saints are the best team in the Lge. Wishful thinking. When you start gelling as a SQUAD you'll move up that table, and that's the test of whether Adkins can do it. .
Well said mate - It's not about the money to buy, it's about talent in spotting talent at the right price and a leadership vision, game plan, playing style, and belief as a confident and well gelled squad. I emphasize SQUAD. All those things now exist at Brighton because of Poyet, and the Chairman Tony Bloom, who is the main reason behind our success. The money helps but thats not the whole game and too much of it often makes for an unbalanced and disjointed affair, with managers being fired every 10 minutes, (Pardew). At Brighton, we tried to sign a couple of players this year and clubs inflated the asking price because we we're league leaders. Poyet told them to stuff it and stuck with what he had, and did better priced deals (Craig Noone, Chris Wood). Money won't be buyng promotion at Brighton. This Journalist talks rubbish though . About the Saints he says - " First team is second to none in Lge 1" ? What ? Are you looking at the League table. He then says "Chamberlain worth 10m" ? What ? Did anyone buy him, he's not worth half that and this was inflated by the local media ? Nobody took the bait. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Southampton talk and act like the world owes them something, a place in a higher world of football perhaps. You have to earn it, and work for it my friends, it doesn't come because you feel your important, and currently Saints have not earned anything, and while your'e all so busy self praising your team and yourselves, the grafters are passing you by. Huddersfield, Bournemouth and Brighton have all earned their current Lge positions and it wasn't because Saints are the best team in the Lge. Wishful thinking. When you start gelling as a SQUAD you'll move up that table, and that's the test of whether Adkins can do it. . PressBoxTeaBoy
  • Score: 0

1:21pm Thu 10 Feb 11

Dan Kerins says...

PressBoxTeaBoy, thanks for your thoughts, but you may want to check exactly what I have written.


I said the Southampton first XI is "virtually second-to-none" in League One, but the squad is a bit thin (the key is "virtually"). I was very careful to qualify everything.


Also, at no point did I say Chamberlain was worth £10m - I said clubs were considering spending £10m on him. A very different matter altogether.


The whole point of the article is to say how I think the Saints' squad is not as strong as some people think and could have done with a bit more in the way of reinforcements. Hardly "self-praising" is it?


Please, feel free to disagree with the my column - that's the point of opinion pieces - but don't claim I've said things that I clearly haven't.
PressBoxTeaBoy, thanks for your thoughts, but you may want to check exactly what I have written. I said the Southampton first XI is "virtually second-to-none" in League One, but the squad is a bit thin (the key is "virtually"). I was very careful to qualify everything. Also, at no point did I say Chamberlain was worth £10m - I said clubs were considering spending £10m on him. A very different matter altogether. The whole point of the article is to say how I think the Saints' squad is not as strong as some people think and could have done with a bit more in the way of reinforcements. Hardly "self-praising" is it? Please, feel free to disagree with the my column - that's the point of opinion pieces - but don't claim I've said things that I clearly haven't. Dan Kerins
  • Score: 0

10:37am Fri 11 Feb 11

St Retford says...

The Oxo speculation clearly didn't help our cause. Clubs obviously thought we had £10m burning a hole in our pockets and decided to up their prices accordingly. Hopefully this transfer window has sent out a message to all clubs that we won't be taken advantage of.
The Oxo speculation clearly didn't help our cause. Clubs obviously thought we had £10m burning a hole in our pockets and decided to up their prices accordingly. Hopefully this transfer window has sent out a message to all clubs that we won't be taken advantage of. St Retford
  • Score: 0

12:03pm Fri 11 Feb 11

Exiled Saint says...

If the cupboard is bare now when we are getting Premier league gates and paying league one wages, what state will we be in when we are paying premiership wages? Is a few thousand a week more on the gates going to bankroll a £20 million striker? I don't think so. Its all built on sand.
If the cupboard is bare now when we are getting Premier league gates and paying league one wages, what state will we be in when we are paying premiership wages? Is a few thousand a week more on the gates going to bankroll a £20 million striker? I don't think so. Its all built on sand. Exiled Saint
  • Score: 0

12:06pm Fri 11 Feb 11

Exiled Saint says...

Oh and before someone chirps in with Sky TV money, know that that cash cow is going to get slaughtered as the EU is about to rule their exclusivity agreement illegal.

http://a-kick-in-the
-grass.blogspot.com/
2011/02/premier-leag
ue-deal-set-to-unrav
el.html
Oh and before someone chirps in with Sky TV money, know that that cash cow is going to get slaughtered as the EU is about to rule their exclusivity agreement illegal. http://a-kick-in-the -grass.blogspot.com/ 2011/02/premier-leag ue-deal-set-to-unrav el.html Exiled Saint
  • Score: 0

8:17pm Fri 11 Feb 11

Spookysaint says...

Dan Kerins wrote:
ian redhill wrote: Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.
I think you'll find the wage cap (which restricts total amount paid out in wages to 60 per cent of turnover) applies only to League Two. There was one in League One a few years ago, but was abandoned, to the best of my knowledge.
Nigel & Nicola, obviously had there reasons, we have come a long way since NA came on board and we still have 18 games to get to the top. So lets stop talking about transfers and money and concentrate on the real matter at hand, getting every possible point we can to go up at the end of the season.
[quote][p][bold]Dan Kerins[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ian redhill[/bold] wrote: Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.[/p][/quote]I think you'll find the wage cap (which restricts total amount paid out in wages to 60 per cent of turnover) applies only to League Two. There was one in League One a few years ago, but was abandoned, to the best of my knowledge.[/p][/quote]Nigel & Nicola, obviously had there reasons, we have come a long way since NA came on board and we still have 18 games to get to the top. So lets stop talking about transfers and money and concentrate on the real matter at hand, getting every possible point we can to go up at the end of the season. Spookysaint
  • Score: 0

1:41pm Tue 15 Feb 11

Redrobbo says...

For League One I think with the two new faces in January our squad is as good as anyones. We are now getting to the business end of the season, there will be shock results along the way, supsensions and injuries will start to kick in. We have the strength at this level to ride out injuries and suspensions, the likes of Bournemouth do not. Brighton have had a remarkable season to date, they had a minor wobble but nobody really capatalized, being out in front brings its own pressure, so they are not over the line yet. I still think we will be top 2, and I still think that Champions is not beyond us, but to be Champions we would need to beat Brighton and remain pretty much unbeaten for the rest of the season.
For League One I think with the two new faces in January our squad is as good as anyones. We are now getting to the business end of the season, there will be shock results along the way, supsensions and injuries will start to kick in. We have the strength at this level to ride out injuries and suspensions, the likes of Bournemouth do not. Brighton have had a remarkable season to date, they had a minor wobble but nobody really capatalized, being out in front brings its own pressure, so they are not over the line yet. I still think we will be top 2, and I still think that Champions is not beyond us, but to be Champions we would need to beat Brighton and remain pretty much unbeaten for the rest of the season. Redrobbo
  • Score: 0

7:41am Sat 19 Feb 11

tugboat says...

Dan Kerins wrote:
ian redhill wrote:
Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.
I think you'll find the wage cap (which restricts total amount paid out in wages to 60 per cent of turnover) applies only to League Two.

There was one in League One a few years ago, but was abandoned, to the best of my knowledge.
Very interesting ,got to be honest I didnt know that,but lets not lose sight of the fact that Nicola Cortese stated right from the start that we have to be self financing to a great degree to survive,and he,s right.
Buying success is very short term,and unsustainable.
The brighton fan who says grafting brings success is right,but saints arent lazy and dont expect success as a god given right.We just happen to have a geater fanbase so therefore more opinions,and we have also been a top side in the past,(emphasis on the past)as everyone reminds us constantly. We are referred to as a "big club" by the media,so expectation is raised .
[quote][p][bold]Dan Kerins[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ian redhill[/bold] wrote: Dan, as a journalist you should know about salary caps etc in this league. As a Saints fan you should also know that we spent a lot on wages to get Fonte, Harding, Lambert et al to come to us. This means that we cannot spend on inflated wages and fees to bring in players who will not massively improve the squad. In addition we are currently a third tier team albeit with premiership facilities and have to abide by FA rules. In the premiership anything goes and there are some massive headaches piling up. I would rather we build effectively and within budget than get hammered by the FA with a points deduction at the end of the season. We will get promoted and we will make the premiereship but we will achieve it in a sustainable way. Thank god for Nicola overseeing it.[/p][/quote]I think you'll find the wage cap (which restricts total amount paid out in wages to 60 per cent of turnover) applies only to League Two. There was one in League One a few years ago, but was abandoned, to the best of my knowledge.[/p][/quote]Very interesting ,got to be honest I didnt know that,but lets not lose sight of the fact that Nicola Cortese stated right from the start that we have to be self financing to a great degree to survive,and he,s right. Buying success is very short term,and unsustainable. The brighton fan who says grafting brings success is right,but saints arent lazy and dont expect success as a god given right.We just happen to have a geater fanbase so therefore more opinions,and we have also been a top side in the past,(emphasis on the past)as everyone reminds us constantly. We are referred to as a "big club" by the media,so expectation is raised . tugboat
  • Score: 0

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