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Unsung Saint’s Champions League cries should alert Arsenal

| 20.05.2014

At the risk of sounding like Ladbrokes’ grumpy, old-fashioned football fan, the problem with the modern day player is that he has no patience.

Having spent the first four years of his Southampton career flitting between the Championship and League One, Morgan Schneiderlin has decided he’d quite like to move a Champions League club now, despite the Saints being on an upward trajectory in the Premier League.

Their 14th-place finish in the first season following promotion was backed up with a hugely impressive eighth this season.

If they continue at that rate it wouldn’t be too long before Schneiderlin would be challenging for a top-four finish at St Mary’s, although that doesn’t seem to be a scenario the Frenchman, who earned himself a spot on Didier Deschamps’ World Cup standby list, is willing to wait for.

“For my progress and my visibility, it would be better to play for a club who play in the Champions League,” he said recently.

Such an admission is likely to have the ears of Arsene Wenger – 9/1 to follow up his recent FA Cup win with next season’s Premier League – pricked, as he’s poised to be handed a healthy transfer kitty this summer to try and bridge the gap between Arsenal and the Premier League’s summit.

With Mauricio Pochettino the subject of Tottenham’s recruitment drive to replace Tim Sherwood, Luke Shaw on various transfer radars and Adam Lallana keen on a move to Liverpool, the Gunners could pounce on the potential summer upheaval on the south coast to land one of the Saints’ unsung heroes.

Schneiderlin, who ranked equal-third in the division for tackles per game on Whoscored.com, would add some youth to the Gunners’ defensive-midfield stocks, with current incumbents Mathieu Flamini and Mikel Arteta both in their 30s.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.