Does Koeman Need To Bring In Another Central Defender ?
Wednesday, 14th Jan 2015 08:47
With Toby Alderweireld out for 3-4 weeks Ronald Koeman has to consider whether he needs to bring in more cover in the centre of defence.
It cannot be denied that the injury to Toby Alderweireld is a blow to Saints, but it is a blow they can cope with in the short term, however Ronald Koeman has to ponder whether he could deal with it later in the season after the transfer window has closed as this will be his last bite of the cherry to cover it.
It cannot be denied that Saints are stretched short at the moment with effectively only two fit central defenders in Jose Fonte & Florin Gardos as with the injury to Toby and Yoshida away with Japan at the Asia cup till possibly after the Swansea game at the latest they have no other specialist central defenders with experience.
However its not as desperate as it looks as both Victor Wanyama who has played in the position for Celtic and jack Cork can play in the position, the return of Cork has eased the situation in this respect in that if we had to press Wanyama into action in central defence, Cork is his ready made replacement in midfield.
But Koeman has to look at the long term picture till the end of the season, from this point of view he then has a dilemma as he doesnt know whether Alderweireld will be staying past this date, which makes it hard to sign a true quality player on a permanent deal.
The likelihood is that if Koeman feels he hasn't got the depth to cope after January because using Cork or Alderweireld is an option but one that would may weaken the team in other areas, then he will go for a loan move where he could possibly sign a defender of class, experience and quality short term without the high outlay needed to get him in permanently, then the manager will re assess the situation in the summer when he knows the answer to several questions, the main ones being whether Alderweireld will stay and also if Saints are in Europe.
If we were to make Europe then not only the chances of Alderweireld staying would increase, but if he goes we can look to better players than we could this window.
Knowing Koeman although like any manager he wants the biggest and best squad, he is also prepared to use it well in an emergency and that means he may keep his hand in his pocket on this one and employ Wanyama or Cork in a real crisis.
Photo: Action Images
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