Shaw & Lallana To Start ! To Push Up The Price
Tuesday, 24th Jun 2014 09:44
Luke Shaw and Adam Lallana are confirmed starters tonight for the England game tonight against Costs Rica but will this be their last competitive game as a registered Saints player ?
Lallana and Shaw start for England in a game that whilst a competitive game is in reality nothing more than a glorified friendly with Costa Rica already through and England already out.
Both players have been the subject of headlines in the press during their time with the England squad, Shaw for his alleged texting of a Playboy model and Lallana for being seen to be trying to drive through a move to Liverpool when his focus and concentration should really have been with the England squad, perhaps both of these situations are storms in teacups brewed up by the press, but the truth is that after England's dismal showing in the tournament, questions will be asked about the all of the squad's commitment to the cause.
A few months ago Saints supporters were looking forward to the World Cup, we were looking with pride to having a number of our players representing the country and in doing so Southampton Football Club, now the reality has been somewhat different and it has been hard for most Saints fans to truly feel the pride in what was originally a trio of Saints selected, yes most of that is down to the tabloids stirring up transfer talk in the case of Lallana and Shaw, but neither player did anything to quell that talk and stating that until the World Cup is over they would not entertain transfer speculation, Frank Lampard did just that and there is perhaps a lesson to be learned from an elder statesman there.
In fairness to Shaw he said nothing and got on with the job, but as said he said nothing and allowed headlines about him handing in transfer requests etc to be thrown around like confetti, Lallana seemed to be more proactive, he was seemingly encouraging Liverpool and if the press was right making demands to Saints, even allegedly being willing to undergo a medical the day before England left Miami for Brazil, Adam must now reflect on his involvement in the first two games and perhaps worry that Roy Hodgson was not impressed with this and felt his heart and focus, not to mention commitment was not with the England team, running into the tournament the general feeling was that Lallana was now a certain starter after his performances in the friendlies, yet suddenly he was cast aside, 10 minutes against Italy and 19 against Uruguay being a lot less time on the pitch than his pre tournament performances merited.
So for tonights game against Costa Rica from a Saints perspective it is perhaps nothing more than an opportunity to see the price of both players increase, already Manchester United have allegedly upped their bid to £34 million, a good performance from Shaw tonight could see that increase, likewise Lallana who seems to know that Saints valuation is higher than the cut prices Liverpool have offered so far and perhaps thinks a big move is slipping away as no one will be prepared to meet the asking price.
its a rather sad ending really, not just for England who in my opinion were let down by a number of players who did not show the commitment to the cause necessary at this level, where its not just about skills and tactics, its about being able to take that extra step, some countries have found it, not least Costa Rica who were supposed to be the whipping boys of the group as well as Spain who found that reputation alone is not enough.
But its also a sad ending for Saints supporters who have found out again that money talks, all that matters now about tonights game is seeing both players perform to a level that increases their transfer value and hands Ronald Koeman that much more money to rebuild the squad, there are exciting times ahead for Saints, it is just very sad that Shaw and Lallana will fund these times rather than be a part of them.
Photo: Action Images
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