Opinion

Opinion: McCarthy’s performances will have Southampton wary of potential big six interest

Opinion: McCarthy’s performances will have Southampton wary of potential big six interest

Southampton goalkeeper Alex McCarthy finished last season extremely well for his side despite the overall trouble the club were going through on the pitch.

And the 28-year-old has managed to carry that form into this new campaign, gaining recognition from England boss Gareth Southgate in the process.

Southgate has given £2.25m-rated (via Transfermarkt) McCarthy his first international call up, with the Three Lions heading into their first UEFA Nations League game against Spain at Wembley on Saturday.

Given his displays since becoming Southampton’s No.1 ahead of Fraser Forster, the rapid decline of Joe Hart and Jack Butland’s relegation to the Championship with Stoke City, McCarthy’s stock both as a Premier League and England goalkeeper has risen — which could be bad news for Southampton.

Considering his homegrown status, if McCarthy keeps up his performances, he could end up becoming an attractive proposition for some of the Premier League big boys if they come looking for a No.2 in January or next summer.

In Lee Grant and Robert Green, both Manchester United and Chelsea have shown signing an English goalkeeper is one way to make more room for non-homegrown arrivals.

Southampton supporters will, of course, question the logic behind McCarthy relinquishing his status as a No.1 goalkeeper and England future for the bench at a top six club.

However, a better wage package and the chance to play in Europe can often be enough to sway a player’s head, while Southampton have shown on plenty occasions in the past that they have no problem with parting ways with their most prized assets.

Saints fans, though, will hope that will not be the case with McCarthy should such a scenario ever materialise.

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