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Profit Players: Jay Rodriguez

Profit Players: Jay Rodriguez

Southampton supporters have been pretty downbeat in recent times after seeing their side suffer a fourth Premier League defeat of the season at the weekend.

Mark Hughes’ men went into their clash with newly-promoted Wolves at Molineux having won just one of their previous six league games, a 2-0 success at Crystal Palace back on September 1. And the Saints were unable to double their win tally on Saturday either as goals from Ivan Cavaleiro and Castro Otto sealed a 2-0 win for Nuno Espirito Santo’s Wolves, thus prompting Southampton’s fall to 16th place in the Premier League table.

As such, there have been many disappointed Southampton fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom are hoping their side will improve as the season wears on having been reasonably busy during the summer transfer window.

Yet much has been made over the years of the Saints’ inability to retain some of their most prized assets, and while the departure of Jay Rodriguez maybe wasn’t in the same bracket as the exits of the likes of Adam Lallana, Sadio Mane, and Virgil van Dijk, it does appear that the South Coast outfit haven’t been the same since his move to West Brom back in 2017.

The one-time England international made the move to St Mary’s back in 2012 after beginning his senior career at Burnley in the years previous, and the striker then went about becoming a vital part of things on the South Coast as they sought to re-establish themselves in the Premier League.

Nine goals in his first season in 2012/13 was then backed up by a mightily impressive 17 goals in just 39 games for the club the campaign after, with his efforts that term earning him his one and only England cap to date against Chile back in November 2013.

Yes, injuries then decimated the next few seasons of Rodriguez career only for the forward to bounce back admirably in the 2016/17 season, bagging six goals for Claude Puel’s side in their run to eighth place in the Premier League table, thus finishing behind only Charlie Austin (nine) and Nathan Redmond (eight) in the goal-scoring charts.

Nonetheless, the club then sold the 29-year-old to West Brom for £12.33 million (as per Transfermarkt) in the summer of 2017, and while that meant a healthy profit of £4.54 million on the striker having spent £7.79 million (as per Transfermarkt) on him back in 2012, it doesn’t appear to have favoured the club at all.

Ultimately, ever since Rodriguez left the club little over 12 months ago, Southampton have seriously struggled for goals, netting just 37 in their 38 Premier League games last term under Hughes and predecessor Mauricio Pellegrino, and only six in their opening seven games of this campaign.

In fact, the Saints were hugely reliant on injury-prone Austin last season given he netted seven times in just 24 Premier League appearances – imagine how much better they might have fared had they kept hold of Rodriguez.

Ultimately, outside of Austin, the striking ranks simply didn’t produce the goods at St Mary’s last season, which begs the question as to why the Saints were happy to sanction Rodriguez’s departure little over 12 months ago – they have struggled to score since then.

So while they may have made a tidy £4.54 million profit on the striker, Southampton simply haven’t been the same since the 29-year-old left the club last summer.

Southampton fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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Article title: Profit Players: Jay Rodriguez

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