The Automatic Saints News Thread

Those of you with memories will probably have the following two facts rattling around somewhere in your brains. First, for a site that hold an interest in Southampton Football Club, we don’t really carry that much football news. Also, although many of us have some trousers, collectively, we don’t have a trousers*.

*For the uninitiated, trousers is a poster over on TSW that acts as a heartbeat. Doesn’t post long posts, but posts often.

That’ll be changing within the next couple of days. Before any long term trousers fans get excited, I have to admit right now that we have NOT recruited TSW’s trousers for this purpose (although he is still welcome to join). Instead, bletch and I have programmed our own version of trousers. We like to call him Optimus Trousers.

In the next day or so, Optimus Trousers will begin to post football stories on this thread. Let us know which stories are valuable, crap, etc, with the voting facility.

Bletch’s original thread about it is here.


How exciting!

Sourced from Squawka

Reports: Man Utd revive interest in Seamus Coleman

Manchester United are set to make a fresh attempt to sign Everton defender Seamus Coleman this summer, reports the Guardian.

Louis van Gaal often played Antonio Valencia out of position at right-back last season, as he didn’t appear to rate Rafael, who also struggled with injury.

Valencia’s efforts in an unfamiliar role can’t be faulted, but Coleman has established himself as one of the best attacking full-backs in the Premier League in recent years, and he would address a problem area in the United side.

The Republic of Ireland international completed 49 take ons and created 34 chances in the top flight last term. He also won 42 tackles for the Toffees.

Reports: Man Utd to offer Jonny Evans as bait for Seamus Coleman

Van Gaal had hoped to sign Coleman in the January transfer window, as per the Guardian, but the club’s attempts to do so were unsuccessful, and the former Netherlands boss remains eager to bring the 26-year-old to Old Trafford.

United made a very poor start to Van Gaal’s first year in English football, but they recovered to finish in fourth place. The club achieved their target of securing Champions League qualification, but they are looking to challenge for major honours in the coming season.

They finished 17 points behind Chelsea at the top of the table, and they have signed Memphis Depay so far to help close that gap.

Meanwhile, the Red Devils are also chasing Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin, with the deal expected to be completed soon, as reported by the Telegraph.

Coleman averaged 64% shot accuracy in the Premier League last season.

Sourced from

Man United to wrap up deal for £25m Arsenal target next week

According to reports from Manchester Evening News this afternoon, Manchester United are hoping to wrap up a deal for Southampton midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin by the end of next week.

The 25 year-old has emerged as one of the most formidable enforcers in the Premier League over the last three campaigns, finishing the 2014/15 season with the second-most tackles per-match (3.7) of any player in the division.

Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal views the France international as a long-term successor to Michael Carrick at the base of midfield, dubbing the No.6 position a ‘key role‘ back in May.

After nearly forcing his way out of St. Mary’s twelve months ago, Schneiderlin is almost certain to leave the south coast this summer with Arsenal, Tottenham and United all linked to his signature.

The Old Trafford outfit are currently proving the most proactive in the race to sign the 6 foot 2 centre-mid, however, and have already seen a £20million bid rejected by the Saints.

According to MEN, United now intend to ramp up their interest and come to an agreement with Ronald Koeman’s side by the end of next week, when they will embark on a pre-season tour of Austria and Holland.

Southampton are also keen to have Schneiderlin’s future resolved beforehand, fearing taking the midfielder on tour could further slow the negotiations process and resultantly disrupt their preparations for the 2015/16 campaign.

The Saints value the former Strasbourg youngster at £25million.

Sourced from Stretty News (Weblog)

Report: United deliver Sergio Ramos ultimatum to Real Madrid Stretty News | Manchester United Blog

According to Jason Burt of the Telegraph, Manchester United have told Real Madrid that they will categorically not sell David De Gea to them unless they are allowed to sign Sergio Ramos.

It has been repeatedly reported that United are willing to have de Gea run out the last year of his contract which will see him leave on a free next summer rather than accept a bargain esque offer from Los Blancos.

Real Madrid have already rejected one bid for Ramos but United appear adamant that they want the Spanish centre back.

The whole de Gea situation is becoming frustrating. Unless Real Madrid make an offer United cannot turn down or the Spaniard hands in a transfer request, it’s simply going to continue to drag on. Even a transfer request can be ignored and Dave has been considerably quiet throughout the saga.

However, it would help United’s cause if Ramos came out publicly about what he wants. Several reports in Madrid suggest there is no way back for the 29-year-old after his relationship with Florentino Perez worsening.

A previous report, as per the Telegraph, also suggests Ramos has already told the hierarchy at Real Madrid that he wants to join Manchester United.

Hopefully the club can wrap up another signing or two before flying off to America for the pre-season tour.

Sourced from Cartilage Free Captain (Weblog)

Tottenham chairman travels to Madrid to negotiate for Belgian defender

It looks like we may be near the end game in the negotiations for Toby Alderweireld. Belgian football journalist Kristoff Terreur has tweeted that Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is in Madrid to negotiate in earnest for the Atletico Madrid central defender.

Terreur is solid when it comes to rumors, especially concerning Belgian footballers, so this is a pretty good source. The fact that Levy is flying out to Madrid personally to attend to this instead of Toby coming to London speaks to how serious Spurs are in obtaining Alderweirield.

Now that Atletico Madrid has dissolved the loan agreement they had with Southampton, the way is clear for Spurs to make a bid for Toby. Alderweireld has hinted that he would prefer to come to Spurs over Southampton, and his signing would almost certainly mean that Spurs are finished upgrading their defense ahead of the new season.

We’ll keep you abreast of further updates as they happen.

Sourced from Inside Futbol

Yes, Southampton Keen – Agent Admits Interest In Former Inter Midfielder Marco Benassi

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The agent of Torino midfielder Marco Benassi insists that Southampton are firm fans of his client, but accepts no bid has been lodged to take him to England.

The Saints have been credited with chasing the 20-year-old Italy Under-21 international as they look to bolster their squad ahead of next season.

Agent Francesco Romano knows that Southampton rate his client, but a move is still a long way off as no bid has landed.

“He is a player they like”, Romano told Italian broadcaster Sportitalia, when asked about Southampton being linked with his client.

“But there has never been any financial offer presented”, he added.

Benassi started his career in the youth ranks at hometown club Modena before being snapped up by Inter.

He struggled to break into the first team at the San Siro and was sent out on loan to Livorno ahead of a permanent switch to Torino last summer.

Benassi turned out for Italy during the recent European Under-21 Championship in the Czech Republic and scored twice in a 3-1 win over England.

Sourced from HITC

Agent of Southampton-linked Italian under-21 star Marco Benassi confirms interest, but no offer made

The Torino midfielder is not set to head to St Marys this summer.

The agent of Torino midfielder Marco Benassi has been speaking about his future this weekend, including discussing a bid that was reportedly lodged by Southampton for his services.

It was reported by Sky Sports Italia that Southampton were keen on the player, who had previously been owned by Inter Milan.

Now his agent Francesco Romano is quoted by Tutto Mercato Web as stating:

“He is a player they like, but it was never formulated into any financial offer.”

So it seems that whilst Southampton do like the player, they are not ready to make a move for the player – who can play in midfield or defence.

The Italian under-21 international recently came to the fore at the UEFA Under-21 European Championships in the Czech Republic. He scored a brace against England in the final group game in the tournament.

Why would Southampton need him?

Well the obvious reason would be as a replacement to Morgan Schneiderlin.

The French international is being linked with moves to the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham among many, with Southampton struggling to keep hold of him.

With European football to contend with Southampton will need more options across the pitch, although it looks like Benassi will not be one such recruit.

Would Benassi be a good signing for Southampton?

Sourced from Daily and Sunday Express

Manchester United to tie up deal for Arsenal and Tottenham target as early as next week

The Manchester Evening News claim United are keen to tie up a deal for the Southampton man before the south coast club jet off to Austria for a pre-season tour. Louis van Gaal wants everything rubber-stamped before his own side’s trip to America later this month.

An offer of around £20million has reportedly been turned down as the Saints value the midfielder closer to £25m. And United could be set to test their metal with an improved offer. Van Gaal has been frustrated in his summer transfer endeavours so far.

Holland international Memphis Depay was snapped up from PSV at the start of the transfer window but remains the only new addition as attempts to bring in reinforcements have hit complications. Real Madrid star Sergio Ramos remains a top target and Bayern Munich pair Thomas Muller and Bastian Schweinsteiger are reported to be on the United boss’s radar. The Dutchman is keen to ensure all deals are tied up before they embark on their pre-season tour.

Sourced from Stretty News (Weblog)

Rojo: Louis van Gaal will win trophies Stretty News | Manchester United Blog

Marcos Rojo has tipped Louis van Gaal to bring back success to Old Trafford.

Manchester United have not won a single piece of recognised silverware (no, the Community Shield doesn’t count) since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson.

After the failure of David Moyes, van Gaal spent £150 million on recruitments last summer and brought United back into the Premier League’s top four.

So far this summer there has only been one signing but more are expected to follow Memphis Depay, formerly of PSV Eindhoven.

And Rojo, 25, is convinced van Gaal will win silverware at United sooner rather than later.

“Louis van Gaal will be successful at Manchester United. He will win trophies. For me, that’s not even a question.

“From the first training session he took, we could tell he was a winner.

“He’s very demanding. He’s not only looking to improve the team but also looking to improve you as an ­individual – he made me a better player.

“Being demanding and asking a lot is a sign of a real winner and it will only be a short time before Manchester United are winning trophies again.

“When we’re out socially he’s a funny guy, always making jokes, but, when it comes to the success of the team, business is business.

“That’s why he commands so much respect from his players.”

Sourced from Stretty News (Weblog)

Report: Steve Bruce wants James Wilson on loan Stretty News | Manchester United Blog

James Wilson could be set for a season in the Championship with Hull City.

Steve Bruce’s side were relegated from the Premier League last season but the former Manchester United centre back has done enough to keep his job as manager.

According to Manchester Evening News, Bruce is keen on luring the 19-year-old from Old Trafford.

Wilson, who joined Manchester United in 2012, has come right through the youth system and enjoyed a remarkable two-goal Premier League debut in the final home game of the 2013/14 season against Hull City.

Having made just 12 sub appearances last season, Wilson may need a loan move in order to get some regular first team football.

The only issue that springs to mind is that if United sell Robin van Persie as expected this summer that leaves fewer options for Louis van Gaal up front.

Sourced from The Independent

Manchester United prepare second bid for Morgan Schneiderlin to seal move before US tour

United are keen on landing the 25-year-old Frenchman before they fly out to the United States for the start of their pre-season tour on 13 July, where they will play four matches before returning home to prepare for the Premier League season ahead and a return to the Champions League.

Schneiderlin is determined to play in the European competition having been denied a move away from Southampton last season, but this time around Saints are determined to receive as much as possible for the France international rather than reject any bids in order to hold on to him.

The Guardian reports that a second offer is already in the pipeline from United, and with 10 days until they fly out to the US, the move is likely to be put through in the next few days should the clubs agree a transfer fee.

United manager Louis van Gaal is determined to bring in new players as soon as possible in order to avoid a similar start to his debut season at Old Trafford, where United picked up just 13 points from their opening 10 games to leave them chasing the pack.

With Memphis Depay joining the club from PSV Eindhoven, United looked to be pressing on with their transfer business early in the summer, but to date he remains the only new arrival so far. With the Premier League kicking off a week earlier than usual on 8 August, United return from the US with just over a week until their opening game of the season against Tottenham.

Schneiderlin wanted to leave Southampton last season but was denied a move Schneiderlin could decide to try and force the move, having shown his frustrations last summer when he took to Twitter to vent his anger in not being allowed to join Spurs, but he has remained tight lipped on his future since the end of the season.

It’s added that United remain interested in Everton’s Seamus Coleman, having seen England right-back Nathaniel Clyne join Liverpool after United failed to make a move for the former Saints defender.

Sourced from 101 Great Goals

Man United prepare new Schneiderlin bid in hope of having him for pre-season tour

Manchester United are preparing a new bid for Southampton midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin, according to a report by the Guardian.

The Red Devils have already had a £20 million offer for the Frenchman rejected and it seems as though they won’t haggle too much over a fee.

Louis van Gaal is hoping to add Schneiderlin to his squad before the club go on their pre-season tour of the United States on July 13.

That means that United only have nine days to complete a deal, but Ed Woodward has gone on the record before to state that the Old Trafford coffers are pretty full.

Having paid around £30 million for Luke Shaw last summer, Woodward and van Gaal will expect to pay around the same price for a full France international.

United only picked up 13 points from their opening ten matches last season and part of the reason for that was the hectic pre-season.

Now van Gaal wants to have his squad fully prepared by August with all targeted personnel recruited, especially with a crucial Champions League qualifier later that month.

Sourced from The Standard

Man United set to make improved £25m bid for Morgan Schneiderlin

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Manchester United had a £20million bid rejected last week for Morgan Schneiderlin, The Telegraph reports.

And this is around £5m short of Southampton’s valuation for the player.

Schneiderlin is still expected to join Old Trafford this summer.

Gunners were also in the race to sign the ‘midfield destroyer’, but appear to have pulled out after discovering the France international’s wage demands.

Sourced from Daily Echo

[GOSSIP: Man Utd set to return for Schneiderlin with £25m bid]( Man_Utd_set_to_return_for_Schneiderlin_with_ 25m_bid/)

MANCHESTER United are poised to make another bid for Morgan Schneiderlin, according to reports in the national press.

The Red Devils will test Saints resolve to keep the French international midfielder with a bid of around £25m, or so say The Guardian.

It comes after reports Saints rejected a £20m bid and the national newspaper says the St Mary’s side is holding out for £30m for the 25-year-old.

As reported by the Daily Echo, Saints boss Ronald Koeman last month said the club had not had a serious offer for Schneiderlin.

The Frenchman himself has poured speculation on his future, last week saying he expected it to be resolved in a matter of days.

Sourced from

Man United hoping to push through Schneiderlin deal

Manchester United want to complete the signing of Morgan Schneiderlin next week, report the Manchester Evening News.

With Southampton set to embark on their pre-season tour to Austria and Holland, all parties would like the midfielder’s future to be resolved as soon as possible.

Schneiderlin’s presence on the tour would not prove a major obstacle to negotiations. But the on-going uncertainty over his proposed move could disrupt Koeman’s preparations for the new Premier League campaign.

Louis van Gaal also wants the 25-year-old in place before his squad fly out for their four-game trip to the US later this month.

All-rounder: Schneiderlin is good in attack and can shield the defence

United have already submitted a bid of around £20m for Schneiderlin, but Southampton consider his valuation to be in excess £25m.

If a swift agreement can be reached between the clubs the French international will be free to remain in the UK to undergo a medical and complete the formalities of a deal.

Van Gaal is eager to tie up the majority of his transfer business before the club’s US tour.

So far only Memphis Depay has been added to the squad that finished fourth last season.

United have had a £28m bid for Sergio Ramos rejected by Real Madrid, with executive vice chairman Ed Woodward considering a second offer.

United are also waiting for Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger to make a decision about his future.

Sourced from

Tottenham urged to make bid for Atletico Madrid defender Topby Alderweireld

Atletico Madrid have disposed the option to sell Alderweireld for a fixed price to Southampton by paying the Saints £1.5m, according to the Daily Mirror.

The defender was on loan at St Mary’s last season where he put in a brilliant performance and is being scouted by the likes of Chelsea and Tottenham for a move this summer. The Saints are willing to sign a permanent deal with the player, but the defender is not averse to the idea of playing with his Belgian teammate Jan Vertonghen at Spurs, especially with Mauricio Pochettino looking to strengthen his side to challenge for a top-four spot next season.

Atletico are hoping they can drive Alderweireld’s price past £11m mark with competition from a lot of clubs in the Premier League. Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy is very interested in the player and is willing to outbid any club for his signature.

Meanwhile, the Saints started the transfer window yet again by shipping a player to Liverpool, with Nathaniel Clyne joining the likes of Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert and others at Anfield for the upcoming season.

Alderweireld will add more depth to their defence, which is threadbare at the moment, given they have lost four players at the back since the start of last season.

Jose Mourinho is also keeping a keen eye on the player, according to the Telegraph, to add more cover to his defence as he looks to retain his Premier League title next season. The Blues have John Terry and Gary Cahill in the centre of their defence, but need more backup with the likes of Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool and Manchester City all likely to strengthen their line-ups.

They have recently announced the signing of Radamel Falcao on a season long loan from Monaco as a backup for Diego Costa after the Colombian was released by Manchester United after a disastrous opening season at Old Trafford.

Sourced from Eastern Daily Press, Norfolk

Norwich City announce two Premier League fixture changes for Southampton and Liverpool away games

Alex Neil’s squad were scheduled to visit St Mary’s on the Saturday but Skysports will now broadcast the Canaries’ fourth game back in the top flight after the broadcaster announced the first tranche of televised fixtures for the new campaign.

Norwich’s visit to Anfield to play Liverpool, scheduled for Saturday September 19, has been moved the following day (KO 4pm) due to the Reds’ participation in the Europa League group stages which is likely to see Brendan Rodgers’ side play the previous Thursday. The game will not be televised live.

Sourced from MUFC Latest (Weblog)

Manchester United poised for second Schneiderlin bid

The overriding sense of momentum that built up last week in the Morgan Schneiderlin to Manchester United rumours, suggested that we could have seen a move completed sometime this week. However, there was little progress to be made, as Southampton reportedly rejected a £20 million bid, which was made more than ten days ago, from the Old Trafford outfit. More frustrating was the fact that it appeared, according to reports that Louis van Gaal had not followed up the interest in the French midfielder with a second bid, making most Manchester United fans perplexed as to the eventual outcome of the deal.

However, there is finally an update on the situation from The Guardian’s Jamie Jackson. According to him, Manchester United will indeed follow-up their initial bid of £20 million with a second offer potentially rising up to £25 million, which had been the suggested asking price Southampton were likely to demand according to multiple outlets. However, Jamie reveals that Southampton’s asking price is actually £30 million so there is definitely a difference in the valuation of the player by the two clubs which is making transfer negotiations difficult at present.

The report also adds that Van Gaal wants to add the 25-year-old to his squad before flying out for the pre-season tour to the United States on the 13th July. It has also been suggested that Schneiderlin could consider direct action should his current club continue to resist attempts to prize him away.

Meanwhile, the Saints seek a quick decision on the Schneiderlin transfer from Manchester United as the club themselves prepare to fly out to Austria for their pre-season tour next week.

There is no question about the fact that the Frenchman wants to leave Southampton after a stellar seven years. There was much speculation last summer about his future, with a move to Tottenham very much in the offing. The Saints had also shown a willingness to part with several first-team players in the likes of Lallana, Lambert, Shaw, Lovren and Chambers. However, Schneiderlin was not allowed to leave which prompted the player to tweet:

The player, however, buckled down eventually, and produced a stunning season that allowed Southampton to creep into the European spots. Arsenal and Tottenham were reported to be interested in the Frenchman again this summer. However, Arsene Wenger dropped his interest after seeing the rise of Francis Coquelin (and being put off by the asking fee) while Schneiderlin is only considering a move to a club that plays in the Champions League, hence, ruling out Spurs. The two clubs also do not want to get into a bidding war with the Premier League’s richest club, Manchester United.

The 25-year-old could be a brilliant acquisition from Van Gaal and add much-needed steel and energy in the center of the park particularly in the defensive midfield role. A strong tackler, excellent reader of the game, and an able passer, the Frenchman would prove to be a perfect long-term replacement for Michael Carrick who is now heading towards the end of his career at the age of 34. Schneiderlin also has a bit of a goal threat, having scored four goals in the Premier League last season (according to Squawka). And while it was initially thought that Van Gaal would prefer German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger in the role, it appears that Van Gaal has decided to pursue Schneiderlin independent of any moves for the Bayern Munich man.

Meanwhile, Jamie Jackson also reports that Seamus Coleman is a target for the right-back berth after Van Gaal rejected new Liverpool recruit Nathaniel Clyne, for the role.

Sourced from Manchester Evening News

Manchester United transfers: Van Gaal wants to complete Schneiderlin deal next week

Manchester United want to complete the signing of Morgan Schneiderlin next week.

With Southampton set to embark on their pre-season tour to Austria and Holland, all parties would like the midfielder’s future to be resolved as soon as possible.

Koeman does not want his pre-season preparations to be disrupted

Schneiderlin’s presence on the tour would not prove a major obstacle to negotiations. But the on-going uncertainty over his proposed move could disrupt Koeman’s preparations for the new Premier League campaign.

Louis van Gaal also wants the 25-year-old in place before his squad fly out for their four-game trip to the US later this month.

United have already submitted a bid of around £20m for Schneiderlin, but Southampton consider his valuation to be in excess £25m.

Van Gaal, with Depay, is eager to get his transfer business done quickly

If a swift agreement can be reached between the clubs the French international will be free to remain in the UK to undergo a medical and complete the formalities of a deal.

Van Gaal is eager to tie up the majority of his transfer business before the club’s US tour.

So far only Memphis Depay has been added to the squad that finished fourth last season.

United have had a £28m bid for Sergio Ramos rejected by Real Madrid, with executive vice chairman Ed Woodward considering a second offer.

United are also waiting for Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger to make a decision about his future.