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TT Introduces Rickie Lambert: The man who should never have left Southampton

TT Introduces Rickie Lambert: The man who should never have left Southampton

Southampton supporters have been pretty quiet in recent times after seeing their team suffer a fifth Premier League loss of the campaign on Sunday.

Mark Hughes’ men went into their clash with high-flying Chelsea off the back of successive defeats at the hands of Liverpool and Wolves in the league, yet having got past Everton in the Carabao Cup in their preceding match. Yet the Saints weren’t able to keep that momentum going as goals from Eden Hazard, Ross Barkley, and Alvaro Morata sealed a comfortable 3-0 success for the Blues at St Mary’s, thus leaving Hughes’ Southampton with just one win from their eight league matches.

As such, there have been many disappointed Saints fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom are hoping that their side will improve as the season wears on, especially given they were reasonably active during the summer transfer window.

Yet the recent market was one of a select few in recent times in which the South Coast outfit didn’t sell one of their best players, a trend which began most notably back in 2014 given they let the likes of Adam Lallana, Luke Shaw, Dejan Lovren, and Rickie Lambert all leave the club.

And while the first three have gone on to bigger and better things, it’s arguable that 36-year-old Lambert, who retired from the game 12 months ago, really shouldn’t have left St Mary’s for Liverpool back in 2014.

Ultimately, the former striker was an absolute revelation at Southampton following his move from Bristol Rovers back in 2009, with the Englishman joining the Saints while they were slugging it out in League One, and leaving them five years later following an eighth place finish in the Premier League.

And Lambert played as big a part as anybody in their meteoric rise in netting a staggering 115 goals in 230 appearances for the South Coast outfit, bagging at least 14 in all five of his full seasons at St Mary’s.

Be it the 51 he scored in League One, the 27 in the Championship, or indeed the 28 in the top-flight, the 36-year-old was remarkable in front of goal and deservedly earned 11 England caps during his career, netting three goals for his country.

And while there is little doubting that the ex-striker earned a move to Liverpool back in the summer of 2014, who he joined at the age of ten only to be released five years later, his struggles not only at Anfield but at West Brom and Cardiff City since then suggest that maybe it was a mistake leaving St Mary’s.

Lambert only scored three times for the Reds in the 2014/15 season and was duly sold to West Brom in the summer of 2015, where he spent just one campaign and netted only once before sealing a move to Cardiff City 12 months later.

Yet the former striker was unable to regularly produce the goods in South Wales as well to eventually see his contract terminated at the end of the season, prompting his retirement a few months later after failing in his quest to find another club.

Thus, it seems pretty clear that things went downhill fast for Lambert following his departure from Southampton, and while there is no doubt that he earned his move to Liverpool in 2014, it seems that the 36-year-old should never really have left St Mary’s.

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

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