In all the excitement about how Garry Monk will look to reshape the playing squad this summer, it is important to remind people that there will be some quite significant limitations on what he can do in terms of player recruitment.
The club recorded losses of £17million for the second half of 2017, mainly due to the money spent on players last summer, and with the constraints of Financial Fair Play, a sale or two will be needed to give the manager the resources he needs to make significant changes.
How much of that will come through the sales of those currently out on loan, we’ll have to see, but I can’t see it being a substantial amount. Players like Andrew Shinnie, Robert Tesche, Diego Fabbrini, Nicolai Brock-Madsen and Greg Stewart won’t bring in a lot of funds.
With that being the case, I thought I’d suggest three other players who could be offloaded in the summer:
1) Marc Roberts
The £3.5m signing from Barnsley just hasn’t worked out. He could come good in his second season, but the manager seems to be keener on the pairing of Harlee Dean and Michael Morrison in the centre of the defence.
Before his switch to the Blues, our no.4 had a number of other Championship clubs, and some Premier League teams, after him so perhaps one may be tempted to make a bid.
2) Craig Gardner
Things just haven’t gone to plan on his permanent return to St Andrews. We have so many players who can play a similar role in central midfield, he could be sacrificed so we can sign up a more creative player.
At 31, he still has many years ahead of him in the professional game so we should see some interested clubs if we do put him up for sale.
3) Cheikh N’Doye
Like Gardner, the Senegalese international could be offloaded without really being missed too much. The central midfield area can easily be trimmed down, and with the 32-year-old having contributed very little since his arrival from Angers, he is one of the prime candidates to be sold.
The midfielder could be named in Senegal’s World Cup squad, and if he performs well in Russia, he could put himself in the shop window for a move away from the club.