Southampton supporters in the Transfer Tavern are relishing the rest of the summer transfer window following the news that Mark Hughes has signed a long-term deal to remain as the club’s manager.
The 54-year-old took over from the sacked Mauricio Pellegrino back in March with the brief of keeping the Saints in the Premier League, what with the South Coast outfit languishing in relegation danger prior to his arrival. Yet the former Stoke City chief did the job asked in leading the side to key victories over Bournemouth and Swansea City to thus preserve their top-flight status, eventually finishing 17th in the Premier League and three points clear of the bottom three.
As such, there are many positive Saints supporters in the Tavern at present, several of whom are likely to be intrigued and perhaps excited by recent reports linking their club with a move for Barcelona attacker Paco Alcacer.
And were the South Coast club to indeed get a deal done for the Spain international, it could spell the end of £13.5 million-rated (as per Transfermarkt) star Guido Carrillo’s Southampton career before it really began.
Ultimately, things just haven’t happened for the 27-year-old since his big money move from Monaco back in January, with the Argentine failing to net in any of his ten appearances for Southampton.
And the fact that he only earned ten appearances post-January, and only featured once under new manager Hughes, suggests that his future prospects at St Mary’s look very bleak indeed even now, let alone if the talented Alcacer joins from Barca during the close season.
Clearly, the likes of Charlie Austin and Manolo Gabbiadini are ahead of Carrillo in the striker’s pecking order at present, and it’s even arguable that Shane Long, who managed just two Premier League goals this season, is also ahead of the 27-year-old.
And to add another forward in Alcacer to the attacking ranks is only going to serve to push the former Estudiantes striker even further down the pecking order, and perhaps out of the club altogether.
What’s more, it’s clear from their goal-scoring woes that Hughes needs to do something with the forward ranks at St Mary’s this summer, what with the Saints managing just 37 goals in their 38 league games this time round, with Austin, who only appeared 24 times in the league, finishing as the club’s top-scoring forward.
And there is little doubting that 24-year-old Alcacer, scorer of seven goals for Barcelona this season and 15 in 50 appearances for the Spanish giants, would add a great deal of quality to the attacking ranks – ultimately, he’d be a huge upgrade on struggling Carrillo.
As such, a move for the Spain international could well spell the end of Carrillo’s Southampton career – it could be over before it really began.
Southampton fans… what do you think? Let us know!
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