Retained list, what retained list?

Last updated : 02 July 2008 By Chris C
After the weeks of waiting, the retained list turned out to be a complete anti-climax. As expected Saints took the opportunity to release a series of high earners from the squad to free up space and wages for the youngsters to come through.

The injury records and ages of Ostlund, Idiakez and Powell counted against them whereas youngster Dutton-Black never quite made the breakthrough. Licka showed promise but not quite the quality to keep out the young pretenders on far less money. Saints do of course hope to retain Dyer, but he has made his position perfectly clear.

The only slight surprise was the release of Jermaine Wright who showed much improved form in the run-in and much needed versatility for what will be a reduced squad. With the release of two potential full backs in Ostlund and Wright Saints are yet again going into the new season with a worrying lack of defenders.

There are just the four defenders in the squad (five if Svensson continues his miracle comeback) and no genuine full backs, a huge concern given the weakness of the defence last season. Saints are not expected to sign any more players, so will need to look to the loan market to find a bargain or two from the Premiership.

Indeed Chris Baird is strongly tipped for a welcome return on loan if Saints can somehow come to an arrangement with Fulham over his wages. He would be an outstanding option at right back and decent cover for centre back and we can but hope that Saints can pull it off.

Youngster Baseya has exercised his option to return to France on a Bosman to Lille. He made the briefest of appearances for Saints in the league last season and this was expected to be the tall striker's breakthrough year after showing his raw talent in the reserves. Time for McGoldrick to deliver in his place.