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Southampton's Guido Carrillo: Captured from Monaco to a La Liga loanee

Wednesday 11th July 2018

Long-term contracts are meant to lock a player into an affordable wage for an extended period, to provide stability for the club. Before Jean-Marc Bosman, clubs had the exclusive option to break the agreement if they felt the player wasn't delivering value. Now both sides have the opportunity. Because honouring one's word is an antiquated concept, a long-term deal is now no more permanent than a season-long loan, Southampton's Guido Carrillo is an example.

The Argentine forward signed for Southampton in January when Mauricio Pellegrino was in charge. The Argentine boss was struggling. He signed Carrillo for around £19 million from AS Monaco. A three-and-a-half year deal was agreed. Everyone hoped the striker would make an impact. That was not the case.

Not to be confused with former Watford loanee Andre Carrillo, Guido had been a contributor in France. He made 65 Ligue 1 appearances, scoring 15 times. Seven came during the 2016-17 season, helping Les Monegasques to the Ligue 1 title. He scored four times in 15 games last season but £19 million is £19 million. 

Playing with the Saints, Carrillo made seven appearances, coming on as a sub twice. The only tangible impact he made was creating an assist for Manolo Gabbiadini in a 1-1 draw against Burnley.

Averaging just under two shots per game, the Magdalena, Argentina native wasn't exactly handed many chances to prove what he could do. Not by Pellegrino nor by current boss, Mark Hughes. 

Sparky believes Carrillo needs to rebuild himself. A loan deal out to Spain is the Welshman's answer. The word I'm looking for is harsh. Brought in for a huge fee on a fairly long contract and just six months down the line Carillo finds himself not only shipped to another club but one in another country. Club Deportivo Leganes is his home for the next season. Hopefully, he can turn heads in La Liga.

The 6' 2" striker may have failed in his debut season in England but he could progress in Spain. At 27, he should be in his prime. The move could be perfect for him. Leganes finished just one place above relegation in La Liga for the second consecutive season. This was just their third campaign in Spain's top flight. In a sense, there was improvement. The Cucumber Growers finished 14 points above the drop.

Carrillo will be linking up with former Liverpool winger Nabil El Zhar. The Southampton loanee will also join up with fellow Argentinian players Alexander Szymanowski, Facunda Garcia, Mauro Dos Santos and Ezequiel Munoz. Although Leganes do not have the quality to compete at the highest levels in Spain, they do have a team spirit. That is something Carrillo will be anticipating.

Adept at playing through balls, Carillo can also hold up play. He is even strong in the air, giving him an adaptive style if his new/old manager Mauricio Pellegrino has fallen more in love with crossing the ball than he was at St Mary's. Carillo is an indirect set-piece threat.

The glaring weakness in his game is the Argentine's propensity for fouling. His discipline must improve.

Whether Mark Hughes sees a future for the former Monaco striker is something to ask the Welshman. Proving himself in Spain would not only be good for Carillo but the Southampton boss may reconsider if he makes a big mark. At the moment, his future is not so bright, but as noted at the beginning, nothing is permanent these days.

Jamie Kynaston

For my sins, I'm a season ticket holder at Stoke City, I have been proud to watch them for over 20 years. I follow most of the UK leagues and the major European ones too, and I've been told that I talk way too much about football.


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