Everton insist McCarthy is not for sale

, 15 July, 52comments  |  Jump to most recent
Roberto Martinez has responded to the latest speculation surrounding James McCarthy by restating his position that he has no intention of selling the Republic of Ireland international this summer.

With a reported move for Aston Villa's Fabian Delph falling through in recent days, it has been suggested that Manchester City have turned their attention to McCarthy in their search for homegrown players that would satisfy their quota mandated by Uefa.

His manager, however, says that the 24-year-old is a vital component of his team and with no financial pressure to sell, he has not intention of letting McCarthy go.

"He's not for sale," Martinez told the media in Singapore after the Blues' penalty-shootout win over Stoke City in the Barclays Asia Trophy.

"My responsibility is to try to keep bringing competition into the squad. I think what we have got now is a very strong competition for places and we don't want to lose that.

"We are not in a situation at this football club that we have to sell to balance the books. What we want is to be successful and create a winning team.

"James McCarthy has been a top performer in the last few seasons. At the age of 24, to be over 300 games shows the know-how he brings, together with young legs and good energy.

"≈It's important that we keep improving, keep getting stronger and that is the only focus we have - not losing assets."

McCarthy has three years still to run on the five-year contract he signed when he joined Everton two summers ago in a 13m deal from Wigan Athletic.

Tabloid reports continue to push the angle that the player feels betrayed by the fact that he hasn't been offered a new deal by Everton and isn't likely to be offered one this summer.


Reader Comments (52)

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Tony Abrahams
1 Posted 15/07/2015 at 21:51:32
I hope he stays but this could all change if it's true that Manchester City want him.
Richard Reeves
2 Posted 15/07/2015 at 21:55:36
I hope I'm wrong but I think McCarthy and Coleman are going to be sold.
Lyndon Lloyd
4 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:09:42
I don't actually think City want him but if they do, they'll have to pay "top dollar" to get him – somewhere in the region of £25m to £30m in my opinion.

In that case, as important as McCarthy is to us – and I happen to think he is vital, particularly as a foil for Barry's slowing legs – we'd be fools not to seriously consider it.

You can buy a top-class replacement for that kind of money.

Paul Hewitt
5 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:12:01
Why don’t we just give him a pay rise and put an end to all this so he won’t he leave?
Sam Hoare
6 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:12:26
If they are willing to pay £25m or over then I would be tempted take it. He's a good player but offers little creatively and I think we could replace him with another ground covering fighter type for half that amount from the continent.

I don't think Besic is that far away from being able to do what McCarthy does, in which case, we could even spend the fee on a top, top class AMC who would really make a big difference to our team.

All hypothetical of course and I really like McCarthy but if someone throws silly money at you...

Scott Goin
7 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:16:21
We don't need to sell McCarthy and I've seen nothing to support the tabloid claims that he's unsettled. Therefore, there's no reason to think we would sell him unless Man City come in with massive amounts of money.
Denis Richardson
8 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:24:46
As has been noted above:

a) If Man City are serious then he's gone as realistically he's not going to turn them down -- they'd probably treble his wages!

b) If City are after him, then milk them like we did for Lescott – min £20-25m
c) McCarthy is a decent player but he brings no creativity to the side and we could (hopefully) invest the cash in getting more assists and goals.

In saying that, I'd be really surprised if City are interested in him -- he's not good enough to play for them. However, apparently City still need to fill four homegrown places (after taking account of Sterling) so they're definitely going to sign at least 2 or 3 more 'homegrown' players before the window closes. (Coleman isn't 'homegrown'.)

Personally, I wouldn't be that disappointed to see McCarthy go assuming we get a massive fee for him, which was then reinvested in a quality creative player.

Peter McHugh
9 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:38:07
I like him but, come on... if we get offered £30m then he will go and surely we would be foolish to reject that kind of money for him.
Jay Harris
10 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:40:47
I have a problem here.

I believe if we have any ambition to gatecrash the top 4 at any time we need to keep McCarthy and supplement him with goal scoring MF players like Fellaini.

We need far more energy and goal scoring ability in MF than we currently have and with Barry, Pienaar, Ossie and Gibson on their last legs I would have them on an exit list before McCarthy.

That said, if we could get over �30 million for him and no doubt he would already have his head turned by his agent anyway we have to consider it.

I just can't think of many �30 million MF players that we could or should get.

Real quality is going for �40 to 50 million and we already have "potential".

Mike Keating
11 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:22:41
It might be the Daily Telegraph but this guy has it spot on - this article is not just about that overpriced dick head Sterling but the Billion dollar Merry-go-round of modern footy.

EFC are nowadays just wallpaper in the wonderful world of the Sky Premier League which we couldn't wait to set up in the misguided belief that we were still part of the Top 5

So much for Fair Play and the pathetic attempt to use bureaucratic regulations to curb the power of multi billion consortia in a sport which came from working class roots and ultimately got sold down the river.


Liam Reilly
12 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:02:32
Keep him.

We've no one that covers the amount of grass that he does and with the extra TV Money coming in next year; if we do eventually have to sell; then it should be for seriously silly money; especially if it's City who are buying.

Michael Winstanley
13 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:59:40
We should keep him. Yes, the money would be good but we need McCarthy for footballing reasons, we don't have a like for like replacement in the squad.

We lose an intensity when he's not playing.

Peter Bell
14 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:09:35

"No one covers the amountof grass that he does."

So does my flymo. That is where the problem lies. He offers no more than a good engine that will get slower as he gets older.

Let's see if he is still covering the same amount of grass in 5 years...

Chris Wilson
15 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:01:24
Interesting that Roberto is responding to this now though. For the last month, every tabloid, fan blog, etc., had McCarthy practically getting sized for Tottenham traveling suit. Or he was going to West Ham, Arsenal, Man U's name was in there for a moment, if I recall; even Carragher (sp) was using his media pull to tap him up for Liverpool. But we never heard any real strong response by Roberto about the McCarthy contract rumors.

But isn't it interesting now that Man City's name has come up; suddenly he's having to make a hands off McCarthy announcement. It could just be the timing of the situation - the club's in Asia for an international tournament and there are journalists everywhere, and so Roberto has to address these questions in the press? Maybe Roberto just feels it's time to address the rumors since they've been going on for several months? Or maybe all the other transfer rumors have been crap, but this new one with Man City has actual legs to it?

Colin Glassar
16 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:16:14
I'd say that goes for everyone Peter, it's called the ageing process. None of us are immune from it.

The only rag who are pushing this nonsense are the Manchester Mirror aka Daily Mirror. Not even my (1) Man City mate gives any credence to this rubbish.

Bobby Thomas
17 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:57:41
300 games already at the age of 24.

He won't be able to keep playing the way he does, he depends massively on his ability to eat the ground up an get about the pitch. He's already picking up hamstring injuries. He will have to change his game at some point.

3 years on the deal soon becomes 2 years and then you have a fast depreciating asset.

Our reluctance to offer an improved deal, considering the policy is get them all on deals, is strange. McCarthy himself has said Spurs were interested when he was leaving Wigan but thought 13's was steep at the time.

If one of the top sides came in and we got £25 million in the barmy transfer world of the Premier League, I wouldn't be too upset. He's a holding player who runs around shitloads. Very good at it like. I'd also be pleased if he stayed, we generally look better when he's there.

I think we need to face facts, however, and acknowledge the only way the squad is getting refreshed is by selling someone. We are potless, as ever. The wanted players on long term deals are Coleman, Stones, McCarthy and Lukaku. Out of them, I suppose I'd rather lose Rom but everyone has their own view. And yes, my first choice would be no-one.

Martinez says we don't have to sell anyone. Okay... But we have no real budget either other than to tinker around the edges. No depth at center back or up top, Lukaku coasting as an unchallenged automatic first choice, unbalanced and relying on old stagers in mid.

Peter Bell
18 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:24:24
Colin, the point I am making is that he doesn't score goals, doesn't create goals, doesn't create opportunities for others, so when he is 28 years of age and can no longer cover loads of grass, what else will he have to offer?

Shearer got older, but still scored goals by changing his game; all McCarthy does is cover grass, not much you can change there...

Michael Winstanley
19 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:35:37
Peter, he's not in the team to score the goals. He's there to win the ball back and for us to keep possession.

We play better when he's in the team because he's really good at what he does.

Christy Ring
20 Posted 15/07/2015 at 22:58:40
McCarthy is only 24, and is irreplaceable in the role he plays for us. If Man City, Spurs, and Arsenal are being linked with him, does that not tell us how good he is?

I don't understand some of the comments that we should sell him if we are offered �25m. He was bought for �13m, so what would a �12m profit buy you ???

Martinez has only spent �4.2m in this window, surely Kenwright can give him a lot more than that to spend.

Nick Armitage
21 Posted 15/07/2015 at 23:56:08
Transfer negotiations with Man City go along the lines of, "No, no, no, no, no... how much? Sold."

If they want him, they will get him and they pay stupid money for average players. Look at �49M for Sterling. McCarthy is very limited, I'd snap their hands off.

Craig Fletcher
22 Posted 16/07/2015 at 00:21:43
I doubt it's true, but if there is any credence to it, I wouldn't be surprised if the moneybags clubs offer silly money for him.

And as Lyndon says, we'd have to at least consider it.

If we use Rodwell, or Lescott to Man City as the precedent, selling need not always be seen in a negative light. In hindsight, we were able to strengthen the squad after selling both of those players when Man City came calling with inflated transfer fees.

Lewis Barclay
23 Posted 16/07/2015 at 00:51:06
Mike Keating #11

Spot on.

Nigel Gregson
24 Posted 16/07/2015 at 00:43:07
@Jay - spot on !~! McCarthy is the engine room of the team. We were able to sell Fellaini, because Martinez knew he had a ready made replacement who was far more effective in the system as a DM than Fellaini (and was a snip even at £13m).

But now, even if we get £30m type of silly money, we don't have a ready replacement. So City would really need to be compensating for all the game's we'd lose while we bed in new combinations and players, and £30m is too low a price for a poor start in my opinion.

Ant Dwyer
26 Posted 16/07/2015 at 01:54:56
I can't understand why this is still an ongoing issue. McCarthy is the first name on the team sheet every week, he's been linked with Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal and Spurs and still we have not improved this lad's contract. Why is this happening?

I've stated before that I have a friend who knows James personally and he seems to think Spurs have made it clear to his agent that £105k-a-week contract is on the table, and a bid is pending. Surely we should act first and double his £35k-a-week contract to put him on parity with top earners at the club.

Chris James
27 Posted 16/07/2015 at 01:41:47
For me I think we need to keep him for at least one more season but crucially we need to NOT play Barry alongside him.

As has been mentioned a few times, he's a water-carrier type player but I think there's nothing wrong with that, indeed the unsung ball-winner with a bit of steel has been a core element of many successful teams (and the sort of player Arsenal, Man Utd and many others have been notably missing in recent years). The problem is that, rather than take advantage of the fact we have one man doing the defensive work of two or three, we're actually playing him alongside one or more other defensive midfielders.

The whole point of McCarthy for me is that he should help free our midfield up for a more progressive partner alongside him (be it Osman, Barkley. Gibson or Cleverley). At one point, Barry could probably have been that player; good engine and a good eye for a pass, but these days he's simply not mobile enough to push forward consistently, so he ends up sitting back alongside McCarthy.

This isn't to slag Barry; I think he has an important role to play in the squad as cover in midfield and/or defence and a sub option to add something different, but whilst it worked 2 years ago when we had attacking pace all across the flanks and our modifying style was catching people out, last season once teams had worked out how to play us, the combination was definitely more miss than hit.

Jason Davenport
29 Posted 16/07/2015 at 03:42:25
Mike Keating #11 I totally agree. Good article thanks.
James Marshall
30 Posted 16/07/2015 at 05:32:10
To all the people saying City don't really want him; they sold Milner, and bought Sterling, and now want McCarthy partly because they need British players to fill their ranks.

They have few British players, so this deal would be good for them. Plus I wouldn't be surprised if Yaya is gone in a year so Macca would be a decent shout for them in central midfield.

I hope we don't sell him, he's a big player for us and should be given the same contract as Cleverley in my opinion.

Sam Hoare
31 Posted 16/07/2015 at 06:56:55
Southampton have just bought Clasie for £8m. He's an energetic DMC who has more creativity than McCarthy. I'm not saying he is or will be as good but it certainly shows how overpriced British players are at the moment and I think a club with our more limited spending capacity has to take advantage of that when crazy offers come in.

Look at Southhampton last year. They sold their 'star' players for inflated prices, replaced them with very capable European pros and ended up doing better in the league whilst assuring they have very healthy transfer funds if they need it for the next few seasons.

Tony Abrahams
32 Posted 16/07/2015 at 07:44:49
Chris (#15), maybe he's responding because it's Man City, a club that always pay over the odds?

As Lyndon said, we hope he stays, but money talks, especially for our present owners. So watch this space.

I know it's early days, but that's exactly the problem for me, Lyndon. Why should we have such an energetic player, playing in a certain way just to protect Barry's slowing body?

We looked more mobile when Cleverley came on, and I know because of Barry's age it is going to take him time to get up to speed, but tactics have to change for me.

Stop playing so deep, "Barry's Position", play further up the pitch. Let McCarthy look after the team defensively, and push another midfielder further forward.

Barkley, does some stupid things, but he also does some great things as well. Play him nearer to the opposition's goal, and get more blue shirts pushing forward. "Let's take the shackles off" and get these exiting young players to grow.

Dave Abrahams
33 Posted 16/07/2015 at 08:57:50
If Man City really want him, then they will get him. Like others on here, I do not understand why Everton have not given him the rise he patently obviously deserves.

To those who say "sell him," well he will be missed when he goes; he knows his job for Everton and does it very well. I hope he doesn't go.

Oliver Molloy
34 Posted 16/07/2015 at 09:03:21
James @ 30.
Thank goodness you don't control Everton, otherwise it looks like you would cave in to any players demands.

The facts are McCarthy signed a FIVE-year contract on THIRTY FIVE THOUSAND POUNDS PER WEEK. No other club including Spurs were prepared to pay Wigan THIRTEEN MILLION POUNDS. What has McCarthy done to deserve him getting a pay rise? Please convince me.

I firmly believe Martinez when he says he will not be sold; however, money does talk and, if we get a silly offer for the player, we will sell and Martinez will have no say, other than getting half the McCarthy money go and buy a replacement. It is where we are as a club.

Dave Ganley
35 Posted 16/07/2015 at 09:41:30
I just don't get this obsession in modern football in that, if a player is not creative, then he isn't worth that much.

Chris (#27) is spot on. McCarthy isn't a creative player but he does all the dirty work that goes unnoticed. If McCarthy wasn't there cutting out killer passes and breaking up the opposition play, then we would give away far more goals than we do. Lee Carsley did the same and we didn't notice until he wasn't there.

Again, as Chris mentioned, McCarthy can and should be playing as a DM on his own instead of having one or even two DMs alongside him. That's where we really struggled creatively last season, this negative tactic of overloading the defence/defensive midfielders and everybody getting in each others way and having few attacking midfielders on the park. Let McCarthy have the position on his own and you open up positions for wingers, Pienaar/Deulofeu, and two other creative midfielders, Cleverley/Mirallas, far more creative and attack minded than anything from last season.

McCarthy is a vital cog in our team and we shouldn't be in a rush to get rid, regardless of the money offered.

Phil Sammon
36 Posted 16/07/2015 at 10:26:56
I'm hoping Cleverley will do two key things at Everton.

1 - Force Gareth Barry out of the team
2 - Make James McCarthy a better player

The only reason (I can fathom) Barry plays is because he is so happy to receive the ball under pressure and has a very good range of passing. Martinez likes a midfielder to come deep, collect the ball from the centre backs and dictate the game. Barry does that, albeit not quite as well as he did two seasons ago.

Cleverley will hopefully take that mantle. He can come deep and get the ball moving. He can take the ball under pressure, play a pass and also offers a hell of a lot more in the opposition's half.

His more attacking tendencies should open up space for McCarthy, who right now is playing on top of Barry.

I noticed Martinez recently noting McCarthy's 300 PL games. Very impressive for one so young. However it does concern me that the manager places so much stock in the sheer volume of PL games played, rather than the actual quality of the player in question. This doesn't really perturb me in McCarthy's case, but I do think that when selecting Gareth Barry, Martinez is seemingly wowed by his Premier League pedigree rather than what he actually produces on the pitch.

McCarthy, Cleverley, Barry, Gibson, Besic, Barkley...we certainly have options in the middle of the park. Martinez has to get it right this time.

Ross Edwards
37 Posted 16/07/2015 at 11:48:17
It's the Mirror and their desperate crusade to have him sold. I don't think he'll go but if Man City offered over £25m it would be difficult to turn down.

Luckily James doesn't have an agent like Aidy Ward who essentially forced Raheem Sterling's move to the Etihad through.

If it is true and he goes to City he'd be signing off his career because City are only looking for homegrown players because they don't have enough to fill their quota.

They only went after Delph to do that and would have stuck him on the bench and probably would do the same for James if they make a move.

Denis Richardson
38 Posted 16/07/2015 at 08:47:01
Everyone of us has his/her own opinion and is 100% entitled to it. However, I have to say I'm really surprised to see how many people think McCarthy is, and I quote, 'irreplaceable'.

Let's be realistic here, at the end of the day, we're talking about a guy with a very decent engine who can tackle well – that's basically it. Granted he does the job well but it's not like there are no other CMs out there who could not do a similar job. McCarthy is not irreplaceable and I find it a bit laughable to be honest that people think he is – he's not Pele ffs.

If any club offers anywhere near £20m+ I would snap both their arms off and drive the player there myself. Our club needs to get its head out of its arse and kick the scouting department up the backside. You only have to look at Southampton to see how it's done. Sell players at inflated prices to the moneyed clubs, then bring in decent quality replacements... for less... repeat. Obviously helps by having a decent scouting network and a manager who knows his own market inside-out. What Koeman is doing down there is nothing short of a miracle. I would be amazed if we finish above the Southampton in the coming season, nevermind the usual suspects.

Other than Besic and McGeady, in two years RM has not permanently signed a player who hasn't played for him before. There's still a few weeks left in the transfer window but I for one am getting nervous of his ability to bring in 'hidden gems' to the club, or even 'gems' for that matter. Especially ones that were/are relatively unknown.

I hope Deulofeu works out and getting him on loan certainly helped to get him in permanently – so credit to the manager there and same for Lukaku. But we still have a lot of problems to solve, namely;

- chronic lack of creativity
- no decent cover (or even competition) at RB, Striker, LM, CB
- still a lack of width on the left (that elusive LM or 'new Pienaar')
- far too many CMs on the books (last count I think we have 9!)
- a lot of players well past their sell-by dates or just not good enough

As said, there's still a month and a half of the window left (RMs 5th now) so here's hoping we get at least another 2 if not 3 new faces into the club. If a massive transfer fee for McCarthy comes in and finances these new faces, then so be it. We're not in desperate need of 'home grown' players so – if Man City are getting desperate – sell him for as much as possible.

No player is irreplaceable and every player has a price, just some more than others. Selling a player for a vastly overpriced sum is good business in my book.

Paul Tran
39 Posted 16/07/2015 at 13:04:58
If he and we are offered silly money, he'll be off quicker than you can say Rooney, Arteta, Lescott, Rodwell.

The main issue is; how much of the money will go to Martinez and then will he get what we need?

Gavin Johnson
40 Posted 16/07/2015 at 13:26:56
If Spurs offered Lennon and £20M, I'd reluctantly sell.
David Nicholls
41 Posted 16/07/2015 at 13:33:20
I've seen a few post in recent weeks mentioning how much ground McCarthy covers. Occasionaly there will be a reference to him covering for Gareth Barry and his ageing legs.

I'm pretty sure Gareth Barry has been recorded as covering more ground per game than McCarthy on average.

He probably covers the ground much slower and therefore is less eyecatching than McCarthy.

Anyway keep him, he's approaching his peak and too many of our players are either on the way up or on the way down.

David Chait
42 Posted 16/07/2015 at 14:01:21
I've always liked a mini style Galactico approach and feel we have the resources to do it. So, for instance, as said before, Macca is worth £16m; he doesn't have the tools to be in the £20m category... that we have seen.

So, if they offer £20m, I would leverage that and try find a 25m - 30m creative midfielder. Start building real quality in every position. Don't dilute it for numbers. We don't need to. So whatever we get, add £10m and leverage.

Michael Winstanley
43 Posted 16/07/2015 at 14:34:25
Firstly, Southampton. Wow, you think they are a great model? What have they done? Produced great talent, flogged it young and won nothing oh and last season they finished above us because we were cack.

If McCarthy wants to leave, then he'll leave, simple as that. Martinez rates him and doesn't want to sell.

Martinez was after Fernando before he joined Man City for £12m so perhaps something could be done there?

To the people who think we should sell him, who do you replace him with? In the games that he's played, who has bossed McCarthy in the middle of the park the last two seasons?

Sam Hoare
44 Posted 16/07/2015 at 15:42:47
Michael, firstly, yes I think Southampton do have a good model. They have climbed steadily up the table whilst also making a profit on players. Not sure how you can have issue with that.

Secondly, how many players did McCarthy boss? He's a good player but rarely controls games from the middle of the park. I think, like others have said, that there are more players out there with decent touch and a serious engine.

Dave Ganley
45 Posted 16/07/2015 at 15:52:59
It beggars belief that some posters don't see the influence McCarthy has on a game. No, he isn't the creative influence that others yearn for but that's not his game. He breaks up the opposition attacks, cuts out balls and protects the back four, giving the endless balls he wins to our supposedly creative players to do something with.

Just having a "serious engine" means nothing if you don't have the positional sense to be in the right place at the right time and that's exactly what McCarthy has.

It appears a lot of people have been suckered into believing what that idiot Dunphy suggested last season, that he needs to be a creative influence. Not his game. Let him do what he does naturally, which is be a defensive midfielder who is a class act. We were a much better team with McCarthy last season than without. As I stated in an earlier post, Lee Carsley was viewed the same way until he wasn't there. Let's do our utmost to keep our better players not try and shoo them out of the door just for a bit of cash.

As Michael (#43) stated, who on earth do you replace him with??

Just as a side issue, yes Southampton have done very well recently, having been forced to sell their better players and Koeman has managed to bring in players of a similar calibre. However, is that the type of club we wish to become? Constantly rebuilding? Surely we have better aspirations than that? With the players we have, if the tactics are right, then we can challenge for European places and cup competitions. Selling our best players will not help.

Denis Richardson
46 Posted 16/07/2015 at 15:57:33
Michael (#43) – look at what Koeman has done in the transfer market since he's been there and compare that to Martinez. Are you seriously saying that we've done better? For example, buying Lovren for £9m and then selling him for £20m to the RS just 12 months later (a ridiculous price), then bringing in an even better replacement for little cost. Just one example of many.

He's made a massive profit and at the same time managed to get better players in than the overpriced ones he sold. I'd never heard of half the players he signed last year but they hit the ground running and the ones sold were hardly missed, even though they were sold for combined around £100m odd.

If I was offered a swap of Martinez for Koeman today, I wouldn't hesitate for a second. Their fans were moaning about not wanting to sell their best players as well a year ago, I am pretty sure they now trust their manager's ability in the transfer market. Problem with us is even if we sold McCarthy for £20m+, would you trust Martinez to invest it wisely? Does he have the pulling power to attract established quality players? He may (hopefully) have but I've yet to see it...

Denis Richardson
47 Posted 16/07/2015 at 16:13:44
Dave (#46) - of course we all appreciate what McCarthy brings but a lot of us (myself included) do not think he's worth anywhere near £20m. In fact imho the £13m we paid was too much. It's simply a question of price – every player has one. For £20m odd I'd want a player who provides and/or scores goals....which is something we're not very good at.

As for 'who else can/would you get' – are you seriously saying it would be hard to find another decent CDM in all of Europe or South America? The guy's is a decent defensive player but judging by some of the comments the club would fall apart if we sold him. We're also supposed to have a scouting department as well as a manager who supposedly knows the market 'intimately'. If we don't know of any options to replace him (should he of course be sold) then the manager and entire scouting department should be sacked.

At the end of the day, none of our players are 'irreplaceable' and if any club is willing to offer stupid money, then sell and reinvest.

Mike Gwyer
48 Posted 16/07/2015 at 16:38:32

Denis #47.

Please do not compare Everton Football Club with Southampton.

Successful model, says who? Just because they sold the likes of Shaw and Schneiderlin for big bucks and then replaced them with cheaper versions does not make Southampton a successful model. Their journey up and down the league tables, and I think we can include League One in their recent fixtures, will show that any team who wants success cannot rebuild every season.

McCarthy?? From my seat, the boy runs the show, brings in the wide boys and keeps things tight. If you don't have the ball then you really do need someone who can go and get it; tell me someone who is better. For me, £20 million would be a steal and rest assured the likes of Spurs or Man City will be more than glad to pay that fee.

Michael Winstanley
49 Posted 16/07/2015 at 17:08:10
Hi Dennis (#46).

Re Koeman. I’m unaware of his transfer dealings or much about Southampton, so I’ve done a bit of google.

The players were sold before he came to the club after success (8th with 56 pts) under Pochettino. Lallana, Shaw, Chambers (I don’t think he’d played for them), Lovren, Cork and Lambert. He replaced them with okay/decent players, 6 players @ £10m each, they finished 7th last season with 60 points.

This summer, Clyne and Schniederlin have left, so more money in the pot although they’ve bought Clasie for £10.5m. This season there will be no surprises, often the second season is the hardest for players and managers alike, plus they have Europa League to contend with, not looking good for Koeman or Southampton.

What happens when an offer for Ward-Prouse comes in or eventually for Wanyama? They’ll sell.

Any idea they have of breaking into the top 6 on a regular basis will fail with this model in my opinion. You have to keep your best players if you want to succeed, only time will tell if Koeman is that good. It’ll be interesting to see where they and him are in 2 or 3 seasons time.

Would I choose Koeman over Martinez? No not yet.

Richard Reeves
50 Posted 16/07/2015 at 21:02:32
Sergi Roberto is still linked with us and according to some websites Barkley has been following him on Twitter recently. I wonder if bringing him in on loan and moving McCarthy on for big money to enable him to spend in other areas that the board are unwilling to provide for is in the manager's mind.

I don’t know how good he is at breaking up play but he gets around the pitch and is a much better passer of the ball than McCarthy.

Denis Richardson
51 Posted 16/07/2015 at 21:11:00
Mike 48 - I'm talking of Southampton today and not the last 100 odd years!

Their transfer dealings over the last year or two have been light years ahead of ours. Their youth academy over the last few years pisses all over ours.

Their history doesn't touch ours but they are moving forward fast right now and unless something changes soon they will be ahead of us for the coming years. My opinion anyway. I saw them play a few times last season and was envious with how fast they moved the ball around with crisp direct passing and their players seemed to be so eager to get into space and more importantly attack.

Time will tell whether the season coming up with be more like RMs first or second.

Michael 49 - granted some of the players were sold before Koeman came but he still replaced them well for less money and they were the surprise last season. Koeman may suffer 2nd season syndrome like Martinez but he seems to have a much better scouting network than our manager - who seems obsessed with signing players from the north west of England.

Fran Mitchell
52 Posted 16/07/2015 at 21:30:33
One thing is for sure, British players are over-priced. You see the likes of Vidal and Turan signing at fees of £24-26 million, and we demand that McCarthey is worth £30M.

But hey, that's the market and we an use it to our advantage. £25M+ for McCarthy would give us funds to buy two £10-15M players. That would be two players into the first team.

Southampton's recent model is interesting. Invest in youth and sell with profits. It has stabalized that club in a way that was unthinkable just a few years ago. Is it a good long-term strategy? Probably not, guaranteeing such a flow of highly talented youth players is no easy task. And the wrong manager can result in much money being spunked up the wall. But for Southampton, it has done wonders.

But they are not the best example. We are already a stable, top-half Premier League team. We need to make that next step for regular top-6 finishes and consistent cup runs.

How do we do it without investment?

For me, rather than Southampton, we should look at the likes of Atletico and Sevilla. They regularly sell their top players at a profit, but use the money to buy well known, highly rated younger players. These players trust these teams as places to go and develop further and get recognition. While they will never consistently challenge Barça or Real Madrid (for obvious reasons), they do have top teams, play great footy, win cups (domestic and European) and even sneak a title (like Atletico).

At the end of the day, no player is irreplaceable.

Tony Abrahams
53 Posted 16/07/2015 at 22:18:23
Not so sure I'd accept £20 Million for McCarthy, if we are going to spend £8 Mill, on Evans. Time will tell.
James Flynn
54 Posted 17/07/2015 at 21:22:59
Glad we're keeping him. Hopefully, his hamstrings aren't nearing their end.

Young James behind Gibson would be my ideal. Not likely, of course. Would like to see that duo play out.

Paul Smith
55 Posted 18/07/2015 at 11:59:33
I agree with Sam and Peter. He’s not a great footballer and his engine will never be enough to take us forward.

I also ca'nt stand the fact people think he’s not in the team to score goals. Everyone should be willing to press forward at every opportunity and especially if your engine is good. I think him an Barry are a terrible midfield and they get walked through time an time again.

Look at the Anfield games where McCarthy has played. He’s been anonymous and they are the games were a player who carries all this energy and intensity should stand out. He’s never eye catching for Ireland either.

If you can’t replace energy for £20 mill plus you might as well give it all up now. Martinez could also be raising his sale profile with his comments too.

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