Adam Lallana is potentially Southampton’s most important player as they look to gain promotion from League One, but they run the risk of losing their most prized asset on a free transfer at the end of the season.
Southampton’s poor start to the campaign has left them playing catch up and a good run of results is needed to help them move into the promotion picture.
They are currently ten points adrift of leaders Brighton, but an improvement in form under new boss Nigel Adkins has seen them become 7/2 favourites to win League One.
However, to continue this run they will need the squad focused on on-field matters, rather than activities off the field.
A number of Premier League clubs are reportedly interested in Lallana and the lure of top-flight football may prove too much for the 22-year-old to turn down.
Southampton fans are relatively convinced that Lallana will agree new terms and his creativity will be vital over the remaining three-quarters of the season.
Although it is agreed that he still has a lot of learning to do, Lallana does give the whole of St Mary’s a lift when he is on the ball and gives supporters the urge to rise from their seats to see what tricks he will produce.
The failure of Andrew Surman to make the grade in the Premier League may also work in Southampton’s favour as he left the club for Wolves and is now playing in the Championship at Norwich.
Southampton host Oldham next in League One and will be confident of making it three wins from four games.
The Saints are 4/6 to beat Oldham and this result is likely if Lallana is firing on all cylinders.
Oldham are unbeaten in their last four games and are 4/1 to win at Southampton. See the whole Southampton vs Oldham match betting odds market.