11:12am Monday 2nd June 2014
Saints have issued a statement following the departure of Rickie Lambert to Liverpool, addressing the issue of transfers and the search for a new manager.
Here it is in full...
"Southampton Football Club can confirm that we have received multiple offers for some of our players in the past weeks. This is a confirmation of the depth of the development that is ongoing in our academy and of the present standing of our first team within the Premier League.
"We are staying true to our plan and vision and, as a result, we have no need to accept any offers.
"We are deep in the process of appointing a new manager who will continue to move our club forward.
"It remains our preference not to partake in any transfers until the new manager is in place.
"Our scouting & recruitment department continues to monitor targets we have identified to improve our squad, and the new manager will have final input into our recruitment process.
"However, Southampton Football Club can confirm that it has reached agreement with Liverpool for the transfer of Rickie Lambert.
"There may be circumstances under which the club will feel it is right for a player to move on. Those circumstances have to be right for the club and the player. This is the case with Rickie’s move to Liverpool.
"When Rickie Lambert requested to leave for Liverpool, the club felt it could not stand in the way of having him fulfil his boyhood dream of playing at home.
"It will be a big challenge to replace him and our intention is to source a quality replacement who will fill his shoes now but also for many years to come.
"Chairman Ralph Krueger commented: “On behalf of the club, I would like to thank Rickie. He served with distinction and helped to take Saints from League 1 to the Premier League.
“Rickie has been a shining light in Saints’ growth and will forever remain an icon in the history of the club. He leaves with the best wishes of everyone at Southampton and will always be welcome back at St Mary’s.”
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