Southampton boss Ronaldo Koeman joked at bringing in Lionel Messi in January as his side were beaten 2-1 by Crystal Palace in the FA Cup.
When asked what his transfer plans were, the Dutchman admitted it was difficult to sign players mid-season who could “change everything”. But joked that Barcelona star Messi, who blasted a hat-trick on Saturday, might well be a good solution for his out-of-form side.
Koeman, who recalled Sadio Mane to his starting XI, insisted his team’s efforts deserved at least a replay against Palace, whose opening goal came when Southampton’s Steven Davis conceded possession in midfield.
“We had the better chances,” he said. “In the last 20 minutes we had some good shots on target, good goalkeeping, and we had a header on the post.
“We did everything, but in football sometimes you are not so lucky. We know in the last period we are not as clinical as other teams, but the mistake we did for the first goal makes it difficult to win a game.
“You think you’re back in the game at 1-1, but Crystal Palace is a strong team.
“(Mane) was active, was dangerous. He’s a good player.
“We are trying to turn around several things in the club, but we have a good squad. It’s also about belief in the players.
“It’s difficult at this stage of the season to bring in one player who will change everything. Maybe if we sign (Lionel) Messi…”