Two years ago we had three England players called up to play in the world cup. "Big" clubs may have stolen those three lions from our midst but we don't buy England internationals, we make them. In Fraser Forster and Ryan Bertrand we have two new faces on the plane this summer. Five other saints from four countries will join them in France to compete for European glory.
In order to look at the various virtues of our boys and their fantasy value myself and Tommy held a mock draft and will tally up the scores at the end of the tournament. The rules are simple, a classic snake draft. I get the first pick, Tommy gets to take two players, then I get two more picks before finally Tommy has to pretend he is happy with the last two players.
Here are the seven saints we'll be picking from alongside their Euro 2016 fantasy price and the points they scored in the premier league this season.
|Player||Position||Euro Price||Premier Pts||Pts/G|
1st pick: Graziano Pelle
Will "I'm taking Graziano with the first pick. His days may be numbered at saints but of the Italian forwards he is the only big target man. Think Conte will play him and fingers crossed we see the good Pelle, not the one who repeatedly flicks the ball to no one then looks menacingly at the corner flag for the rest of the game"
Pelle's unorthodox career path to this tournament is a fairytale. Finally he gets his chance to show his home nation what they missed when he left for Holland years ago. Leading up to the tournament head coach Antonio Conte has questioned whether his side have the quality to make it to the final week of the euros. They will need Graziano on form to have any chance.
Should you buy him?: As much as saints fans love Graziano Pelle, there are far better options in his price range for this tournament.
Alternatives: Oliver Giroud, Alvaro Morata, Harry Kane all available at £8.5m
2nd pick: Shane Long
Tommy "Shane Long is an animal, and I like him more than Pellè personally. So quick in attack, and can turn nothing into something, like that match against Germany."
For years he struggled to break into his country's starting eleven. It seemed an injustice that the ageing Robbie Keane had been keeping him on the bench, but club form means he has to start in this tournament. He is a national treasure after that goal against Germany in the qualifiers and the fans will demand it. Ireland won't be able to outclass the superior opposition in a tough group instead they will have to follow Long's example and outwork them.
Ireland do have a history of big tournament heroics and as always they will be cheered on by an army of green maniacs.
Should you buy him?: Shane looks a decent price at £6.5m, you just worry how many scoring opportunities his team will carve out for him.
Alternatives: Aleksandr Kerzhakov, Simone Zaza, Aritz Aduriz all available at £6.5m
3rd pick: Steven Davis
Tommy "Steven Davis is a great worker, decent player, and a good leader. It'll be fun to see what he can do for his country."
Our Mr Consistent is Northern Ireland captain so guaranteed to play every minute possible. Even has a habit of popping up with a goal for his country, a goal every ten games for his country compared to one in fifteen for our beloved saints. Ended the season with a fine goal scoring run, three in our final three games. And he'll have to hope he can keep that scoring form up as his tournament may well only last three games. Every team in group C is a lot better than anything they faced in qualifying.
Should you buy him?: The majority of midfielders in this price range are more defensively minded, but I won't be spending my money here.
Alternatives: Jack Wilshere, Moussa Dembele, Sami Khedira all available at £6.0m
4th pick: Ryan Bertrand
Will "Less happy about this pick now he is nursing an injury, but can see Rose performing badly enough against Mamaev that Ryan starts the rest of the tournament. Hell, I'd him at centre back after the season he's had!"
In a sane world Bertrand starts. Unfortunately this planet has repeatedly demonstrated it's insanity. As was the case with Nathanial Clyne, a saints player is only guaranteed a starting role when he goes to a big club that finishes below Southampton in the league.
Should you buy him?: Worth a risk. Hodgson my have a moment of clarity and start the best left back in his squad. England's relatively easy group should secure some clean sheets. Their top heavy unbalanced squad might hurt his fantasty point scoring abilities.
Alternatives: Sick note Vermaelen, Shkodran Mustafi, Eliquim Mangala all available at £5.0m
5th pick: Jose Fonte
Will "Probably won't see any time on the pitch but hopefully the coach sees sense and gives him a run out."
It took him thirty years to finally get a cap but stick with the saints and we'll make your dreams come true. Still a bit of an unknown quantity in his own country, Jose is a backup in this squad.
Should you buy him?: Might be worth a transfer when Pepe gets banned for the entire tournament after eviscerating Glyffi Siggurdsson in Portugal's opener.
Alternatives: Craig Cathcart, John Stones, Erik Durm all available at £4.5m
6th pick: Fraser Forster
Tommy "Fraser Forster is a great player, though not sure how much, if any, playing time he'll get. Great #2 behind Hart."
England's number one in our hearts but unfortunately Joe Hart is one of the few England stars who hasn't let his manager down in recent years. Shilton in his prime couldn't get the 1 off his back.
Should you buy him?: Transfer him in if Hart picks up an injury, otherwise avoid.
Alternatives: Artur Boruc, Darren Randolph, Adam Bogdan all available at £4.5m
Final pick (Mr Irrelevant): Cedric Soares
Tommy "Cedric left me unimpressed for Saints, so it'd be nice to see him get on in the EURO's."
Couldn't beat out Cuco for a place in the saints side at the end of the season. Will struggle to get into the first XI for his country.
Should you buy him?: When he played Cedric was a decent fantasy defender in the premier league. Portugal's manager is less likely to pick him than he who shall not be named did at the end of this season.
Alternatives: Angelo Ogbonna, Jordan Lukaku, Lucas Hernandez all available at £4.5m
Best of luck to our boys as they battle for European supremacy.
If you have a fantasy team on the official McDonalds game on http://eurofantasy.uefa.com/ then feel free to join us in the St Mary's Musings fantasy league.
Use the code 94426OPE to join the fun.