The FA Cup has been comprehensively settled, and thanks to a recently amended rule change, Southampton have qualified for the qualifiers of the Europa League. I wanted to qualify that, because it leaves us with some interesting decisions, not only about how many players we buy, but also. when we buy them.
Conventional wisdom suggests you need squad depth to survive the rigours of competing in an extra, continental competition. The Europa League in particular gets a bad rap for the stresses it places on English teams. While I reckon we’re slightly better equipped to deal with that than clubs that don’t have an academy, we’re still going to need to reinforce to compete in all campaigns.
The problem, of course, is that we’ve only qualified for the qualifiers, and while some transfer business can inevitably wait until the conclusion of those qualifiers, there’s a fair chance that another team could have gotten in their first, or the player in question is already cup-tied in European competition.