Southampton admit it will be difficult retaining key players this summer

Southampton manager Ronaldo Koeman has admitted it will be difficult for the club to hold on to some of its prized players should teams swoop in with big money offers in the summer.

The team was left for dead by most pundits before the start of the season after seeing the departures of Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana and Dejan Lovren to Liverpool; Luke Shaw to Manchester United and Calum Chambers to Arsenal.

However, Southampton have shown strength and solidarity over the course of the season and are still in the hunt for European qualification. The club is currently in seventh place in the Premier League, just a single point behind Liverpool for the league’s Europa League spot.

Despite the team’s success, it is expected that midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin and right-back Nathaniel Clyne will leave the club this summer.

Schneiderlin has been heavily linked with moves to Tottenham and Arsenal since last summer, while Clyne is expected to leave Southampton and join Manchester United once the season comes to a end.

Koeman admitted it will be difficult for the club to retain these players past this season.

“It will be hard when there is real interest in the player,” the manager said. “It is up to the player what he likes to do.

“It is very hard but normally if we have the season like we have so far there will be interest in the players of Southampton.

“If they get a big offer from a big team, there is always interest for the player and I understand that. That is normal, we know our level and that is a compliment for the players and the club.”

While Clyne has remained silent regarding the transfer speculation surrounding him, Schneiderlin has made it clear that he wants to leave Southampton if the club fails to qualify for the Champions League.

 

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