Liverpool playmaker Adam Lallana has revealed that he regrets certain aspects of his 2014 summer move to Anfield from Southampton, and admitted he had left a bitter taste in the mouths of some supporters who used to idolise him.
The England international caused a stir on the south-coast when he pushed for an exit after being part of the side that finished in an impressive eighth place under Mauricio Pochettino, and his departure was felt more than any of the losses in the summer transfer window.
Despite the fact that Luke Shaw joined Manchester United and both Rickie Lambert and Dejan Lovren also made a switch to Liverpool, Lallana was ostracised by large sections of the Southampton fan base for the way he had handled the situation, with rumours abound that he had promised never to play for the club again.
However, as he prepares to make the trip to St. Mary’s with his new teammates ahead of the second Premier League meeting this term between the two sides - he was missing through injury when they played on the opening day of the season - Lallana has insisted, via an interview with BBC Radio Solent, that that was never the case, and that there’s even certain things he regrets about his move.
"I regret the way I left. I regret bits and pieces of how it happened and it got nasty. It was sad the way it happened," he said.
"I regret bits and pieces of how it happened and it got nasty"
"What is true is that when I knew of Liverpool's interest and that they had put a bid in, I did say to the club it would be my wish if they could negotiate a fee for me to move on.
"Not for one second did I say I wouldn't play for the club again. I'm man enough to say it was my choice and my decision for me to move on."
Whether or not that will quell the resentment still present amongst the Saints faithful by the time Saturday’s fixture rolls around remains to be seen, with many of the opinion that their former captain abandoned ship when he should have stayed.
Morgan Schneiderlin is a coincidental example of a man who wanted to move clubs last summer but ended up staying, and though his situation was different to Lallana’s, he’s now prospering as a result.
In fact it could be argued that in hindsight Lallana has been given plenty of reasons to regret leaving his former club, with Ronald Koeman having led the charge up the table to laugh off fears that they would be relegated following the exodus prior to the start of this campaign. Currently Southampton are fourth in the table, four points ahead of Liverpool. Come the weekend they’ll have the chance to extend the gap to seven points.
Living to regret?
Although he’s starting to become a more influential figure now, Lallana’s form for Liverpool this season has been shaky, and it remains to be seen whether or not he’ll ever be as effective for them as he was under Pochettino last term. If he fails to be the move will have to be put down as a mistake, though there’s plenty of time for him to adapt yet.
Liverpool fans, do you think Lallana will regret his move to Anfield in the long-run? Let us know in the comments box below...