Arsenal retained the FA Cup on Saturday, demolishing Aston Villa 4-0 in a one-sided final at Wembley.
The Gunners celebrated their success long into the night, but they were not the only club in a party mood.
Southampton were also delighted with the result, as it meant that their seventh-place finish in the Premier League was good enough to seal a place in the Europa League – the Saints would have missed out had Villa lifted the trophy.
Arsenal’s main transfer target this summer is widely believed to be Morgan Schneiderlin – a deep-lying midfielder who has been at Southampton since June 2008.
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Schneiderlin has been at St Mary’s since the club’s lowly days as a Championship outfit.
Therefore, it is quite plausible that he could be persuaded to stay with the Saints for one more season, so that his is able to fully enjoy the fruits of his labour by taking part in Southampton’s first European campaign in 12 years.
Schneiderlin will eventually outgrow Southampton- that is certain. But he is still only 25 and things are looking bright under Ronald Koeman on the South Coast. He may not have played his last game in red and white stripes.
It would be a major blow if Arsenal were to miss out on Schneiderlin this summer. The French international, who made 96 tackles and was dribbled past just 34 times last season, is exactly the player Arsene Wenger needs to bolster his midfield, which lacks muscle at times.
Even if Southampton are to sell Schneiderlin, their Europa League qualification could see them raise the player’s asking price significantly.
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