Chelsea were closing in on Southampton’s Luke Shaw like a lioness on a gazelle even before the Nicola Cortese resignation threw the south coast club into turmoil, and now the Blues are really smelling blood.
According to the Daily Star, Roman Abramovich’s people had lodged a £21m bid, which comprised of £15m cash plus Ryan Bertrand, for the much-raved-about left-back prior to the Saints chairman’s shock departure.
But in Cortese’s absence Southampton owner, Katharina Liebherr, has taken over the role temporarily and as it was her preference to try and cash in on the growing value of both the club and its players that saw Cortese quit, Chelsea could sense a second opportunity to strike.
The Southampton problems don’t start and end at the departure of 18-year-old Shaw, however. West Ham are thought to be readying a bid for the club’s long-serving striker, Rickie Lambert, and a whole host of other stars could come into the transfer conversation in the coming weeks.
With Cortese now gone, the ambition of the club’s owners is being seriously questioned by the club’s players and should Mauricio Pochettino follow his close friend’s lead in walking away, something he’s currently 11/10 to do, a fire sale could be in store.
Adam Lallana has performed so well this term he was afforded an England debut and would be on the radar of some of the league’s higher ranking clubs should he become available.
On the opposite flank, Jay Rodriguez also made his national side bow and would attract interest from the likes of top-four chasing Everton and Tottenham, both of whom could do with a versatile striker come winger.
In central midfield Morgan Schneiderlin has earned rave reviews this term, while Dejan Lovren was afforded much of the credit for Southampton’s early season defensive solidity.
All of these players will be thrust into the transfer rumour mill should the sorry situation at St Mary’s continue to free fall.
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