Have Saints enough depth to cope?

Basingstoke Gazette: Victor Wanyama has started every league game so far, but he could be absent tomorrow Victor Wanyama has started every league game so far, but he could be absent tomorrow

Mauricio Pochettino is facing some tough dilemmas.

After experiencing the highs of football with a flying start to the season, the Saints boss is now trying to navigate his way through the opposite end of the game’s fortunes.

Three defeats on the bounce is tough enough, without looking at the fixtures on the horizon.

Immediately there is the visit of Manchester City, and things don’t get much easier over the festive period with a trip to Newcastle, a home game against Tottenham, back-to-back matches at Cardiff and Everton before a New Year’s Day visit from Chelsea.

Not long ago it didn’t feel as though the bubble would burst. Now Pochettino is desperate to inject some momentum back into his side.

There have been two major reasons for these problems.

The first is obviously the fixture list. Few teams are going to get much from games at Arsenal and Chelsea. Saints didn’t, and at least emerged from both with a bit of credit.

The other problem has been one that arguably contributed to their downfall against Aston Villa – injury problems.

There has been a debate rumbling on in the background as to whether Saints’ squad lacks the necessary strength in depth to sustain a top four challenge.

Pochettino has stated his faith in the players at his disposal, but it will be interesting to see whether the January transfer window backs that up now he is seeing how the fringe players actually fare when called upon.

There is little he can realistically do about the goalkeeping situation. To lose two experienced first team keepers at the same time is just rotten luck.

They do at least have Paulo Gazzaniga still and so Pochettino probably has to just accept a tricky situation for what it is in that department.

The bigger questions are being asked in the outfield areas.

It’s not that Saints don’t have bodies to call upon.

But are there enough of them and, even more crucially, is there enough quality?

That is a question open to debate.

There probably are roughly enough numbers, but the difficulty with the quality issue is just how fast Saints are moving forward.

They have a squad with requisite depth for a mid-table Premier League finish.

That is a testament to how quickly they have moved forward as a club under Nicola Cortese, but also as a squad of players.

Many of the more fringe players have been with Saints for at least one promotion and have adapted to the rigours of the top flight. They have become good enough to be considered mid-table Premier League footballers.

That is a fantastic achievement, and one for which they should be congratulated.

However, Saints are now setting their sights higher than being a mid-table Premier League club.

They are ultimately aiming to challenge for a top four spot as soon as possible.

The club have made no secret of their desire to try and bag a Champions League spot as soon as this season.

What we saw in the opening ten or so games was a team that seemed to have a chance of making that a reality.

The same handful of players were being used each and every week and were performing at a terrifically high level.

But since injuries have bitten, we are seeing what lies beneath that in terms of the depth of the squad.

It is a mid-table Premier League team, not a top four team.

When you look at the strength in depth of the regular top four clubs it is a frightening prospect. And, with all due respect, a world away from what Saints can boast.

However, those sides have had the riches and attraction of the Champions League to provide that.

It’s going to be hard to match initially, but what they must do is ensure they have a squad as strong as those others who are pretenders to the top crown.

We are therefore talking about the likes of Tottenham, Liverpool, Everton. That is where Saints need to get to in the first place.

Surely that will mean some strengthening is required.

Saints do have a hefty injury list ahead of tomorrow’s game against Manchester City.

If Artur Boruc, Kelvin Davis, Nathaniel Clyne, Danny Fox, Morgan Schneiderlin, Victor Wanyama, Guly do Prado and Gaston Ramirez are all out, then Pochettino has a few issues.

You are suddenly looking at playing a youngster or a player that hasn’t previously been fancied when everybody else is fit. That often means they lack a bit of match sharpness due to a lack of game time – certainly in these days where there is no regular reserve league.

These tough times may not be ideal in the context of a top four charge this season, but they could be invaluable insights for Pochettino.

He probably would have preferred to keep using the same small group of players during the entire campaign, and you can well imagine the success they could have.

But to be forced to confront the reality of your squad when your long term aim is so impressive is no bad thing.

It’s easy to think you have everything at your disposal, but the proof will ultimately be seen on the pitch if this injury run continues.

Saints have come so far so fast it is naturally impossible for everything to keep up.

That is a credit to the club, to Pochettino and the squad, including those fringe players.

Believe it or not, after three back-to-back defeats, it is a positive, not a negative.

But progress waits for no man.

And Saints may have tough decisions to make in the January window if they are really serious about reaching their stated destination.

Comments (40)

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6:26am Fri 6 Dec 13

Mr. Miyagi says...

Very good article. Hit the nail on the head over many issues. Obviously the strength in depth was always going to be an issue when injuries or suspensions hit. I suppose Saints are, at the moment, a victim of their own success. It's wonderful for a manager to be able to pick from the same 14 or so players every week when they are fit and playing well. Continuity and consistency has been evidence of that. This is the time when we have to sit tight, hope fringe players can adapt quickly, injuries heal quickly or strengthen as and when necessary.

As the article states, there's no need to worry too much about results against Arsenal, Chelsea or Man City this weekend, but the points need to be taken against the teams at the next level down between 5th and 10th. The bus currently has one or two mechanical issues, but I'm sure MoPo and Nicola can fix it between them to get us back on the road very soon.

COYS
Very good article. Hit the nail on the head over many issues. Obviously the strength in depth was always going to be an issue when injuries or suspensions hit. I suppose Saints are, at the moment, a victim of their own success. It's wonderful for a manager to be able to pick from the same 14 or so players every week when they are fit and playing well. Continuity and consistency has been evidence of that. This is the time when we have to sit tight, hope fringe players can adapt quickly, injuries heal quickly or strengthen as and when necessary. As the article states, there's no need to worry too much about results against Arsenal, Chelsea or Man City this weekend, but the points need to be taken against the teams at the next level down between 5th and 10th. The bus currently has one or two mechanical issues, but I'm sure MoPo and Nicola can fix it between them to get us back on the road very soon. COYS Mr. Miyagi

7:42am Fri 6 Dec 13

Rising_Son says...

I don't understand why having these players injured means that we are a victim of our success.
I don't understand why having these players injured means that we are a victim of our success. Rising_Son

7:45am Fri 6 Dec 13

miltonarcher says...

Spend in January
Spend in January miltonarcher

8:12am Fri 6 Dec 13

Norwegian Saint says...

Was JWP taken off injured? Any updates on Clyne, Spider and Wanyama? Why didn't Hoover play against Villa? Is he also injured?
Injuries could nearly make up a good side...

Boruc
K. Davies
Clyne
Hoover?
Fonte
Ramirez
Wanyama
Schneidelin
Guly
Lee?
(That would make a good 5-a-side team!)

As with the huge storms here, we need to batten down the hatches and ride it out.
Was JWP taken off injured? Any updates on Clyne, Spider and Wanyama? Why didn't Hoover play against Villa? Is he also injured? Injuries could nearly make up a good side... Boruc K. Davies Clyne Hoover? Fonte Ramirez Wanyama Schneidelin Guly Lee? (That would make a good 5-a-side team!) As with the huge storms here, we need to batten down the hatches and ride it out. Norwegian Saint

8:16am Fri 6 Dec 13

Stroppy_gramps says...

Speculation.
we're in a far better position that we were last season. that is all that matters.
Speculation. we're in a far better position that we were last season. that is all that matters. Stroppy_gramps

8:18am Fri 6 Dec 13

Norwegian Saint says...

Best team I can see us building...

Gazza
Chambers (unless Clyne is fit)
Hoover (unless Fonte is fully fit)
Lovren
Shaw
Cork (unless Wanyama is fit)
Lallana
JWP
Davis (unless Spider is fit)
J-Rod
Lambert
Best team I can see us building... Gazza Chambers (unless Clyne is fit) Hoover (unless Fonte is fully fit) Lovren Shaw Cork (unless Wanyama is fit) Lallana JWP Davis (unless Spider is fit) J-Rod Lambert Norwegian Saint

8:26am Fri 6 Dec 13

likewatchingbrazil says...

Norwegian Saint wrote:
Best team I can see us building... Gazza Chambers (unless Clyne is fit) Hoover (unless Fonte is fully fit) Lovren Shaw Cork (unless Wanyama is fit) Lallana JWP Davis (unless Spider is fit) J-Rod Lambert
think i would try cody cropper, and at the moment Dani seems to be raising his game.
[quote][p][bold]Norwegian Saint[/bold] wrote: Best team I can see us building... Gazza Chambers (unless Clyne is fit) Hoover (unless Fonte is fully fit) Lovren Shaw Cork (unless Wanyama is fit) Lallana JWP Davis (unless Spider is fit) J-Rod Lambert[/p][/quote]think i would try cody cropper, and at the moment Dani seems to be raising his game. likewatchingbrazil

8:27am Fri 6 Dec 13

montecristosaint says...

I fear we are in for a very tough week end. If we get so much as a point I will be amazed. Players like Yoshida Hooiveld Fox are just not good enough and we need a goalkeeper too. vAll we can do is support the team and hope they play out of their skins but they really have to stop missing chances, and create better ones . Backs to the Wall times.
I fear we are in for a very tough week end. If we get so much as a point I will be amazed. Players like Yoshida Hooiveld Fox are just not good enough and we need a goalkeeper too. vAll we can do is support the team and hope they play out of their skins but they really have to stop missing chances, and create better ones . Backs to the Wall times. montecristosaint

8:48am Fri 6 Dec 13

terrence77 says...

What Saint need is to buy a proven striker like Defoe who is dying to play week in week out soon Brazil 2014 and he wants to play in the world cup
What Saint need is to buy a proven striker like Defoe who is dying to play week in week out soon Brazil 2014 and he wants to play in the world cup terrence77

8:49am Fri 6 Dec 13

Sheffieldsaint says...

What a difference a top quality striker makes to an average team, Liverpool a point in question. If Saints could field a player of Suarez's ability we would be pushing for top four because I believe that man for man we are a better team than Liverpool.

No wonder Brendan Rogers was desperate to keep him at Anfield, without him he would have been sacked by now.
What a difference a top quality striker makes to an average team, Liverpool a point in question. If Saints could field a player of Suarez's ability we would be pushing for top four because I believe that man for man we are a better team than Liverpool. No wonder Brendan Rogers was desperate to keep him at Anfield, without him he would have been sacked by now. Sheffieldsaint

9:09am Fri 6 Dec 13

terrence77 says...

@Sheffieldsaint

You are so right I'm not saying that Saint is an average Team but I'm saying that they could do with Defo who is better than Osvaldo and Lambert. To be honest I don't think many on here can't disagree on this one He has the pace, a powerful right foot and he can poach goal that's what they need right now because it's good to have 77% possession and many chances but Saint need to score more goals
@Sheffieldsaint You are so right I'm not saying that Saint is an average Team but I'm saying that they could do with Defo who is better than Osvaldo and Lambert. To be honest I don't think many on here can't disagree on this one He has the pace, a powerful right foot and he can poach goal that's what they need right now because it's good to have 77% possession and many chances but Saint need to score more goals terrence77

9:18am Fri 6 Dec 13

Puddletown Saint says...

We are a gloomy lot today Lets be half full and see this as an opportunity for many - here is my starters presuming all that are injured are still:

Gazza
Chambers Lovern Hoover Shaw
JWP Cork S Davis
Lallana
Jay Rod SRL

Cropper Yos Targett Reed Rowe Osvaldo Gallagher

COME ON YOU SAINTS :)
We are a gloomy lot today Lets be half full and see this as an opportunity for many - here is my starters presuming all that are injured are still: Gazza Chambers Lovern Hoover Shaw JWP Cork S Davis Lallana Jay Rod SRL Cropper Yos Targett Reed Rowe Osvaldo Gallagher COME ON YOU SAINTS :) Puddletown Saint

9:18am Fri 6 Dec 13

Clever Dick says...

montecristosaint wrote:
I fear we are in for a very tough week end. If we get so much as a point I will be amazed. Players like Yoshida Hooiveld Fox are just not good enough and we need a goalkeeper too. vAll we can do is support the team and hope they play out of their skins but they really have to stop missing chances, and create better ones . Backs to the Wall times.
Yosh and Hoover were our central defence for most of last season. Take out the first ten games and they did pretty well. Even with that horrendous start we didn't get relegated. Therefore they are good enough, just not as good as the best. It'll be another tough game Saturday but we beat ManC last year without Dejan and Victor.. I think we are lucky to have competent replacements if they are needed.
[quote][p][bold]montecristosaint[/bold] wrote: I fear we are in for a very tough week end. If we get so much as a point I will be amazed. Players like Yoshida Hooiveld Fox are just not good enough and we need a goalkeeper too. vAll we can do is support the team and hope they play out of their skins but they really have to stop missing chances, and create better ones . Backs to the Wall times.[/p][/quote]Yosh and Hoover were our central defence for most of last season. Take out the first ten games and they did pretty well. Even with that horrendous start we didn't get relegated. Therefore they are good enough, just not as good as the best. It'll be another tough game Saturday but we beat ManC last year without Dejan and Victor.. I think we are lucky to have competent replacements if they are needed. Clever Dick

9:19am Fri 6 Dec 13

mbetts says...

This is a game I don't have any great expectations from, so could be ideal to give Cody his debut.
This is a game I don't have any great expectations from, so could be ideal to give Cody his debut. mbetts

9:50am Fri 6 Dec 13

St Retford says...

A few weeks ago this would have been the unstoppable force meeting the immovable object; the league's most potent attacking force versus the meanest defence. But I think, without three of our best players, we're going to leak goals.

Which means the only solution is to go and score five up the other end. Sir Daniel of Osvaldoshire, your time has come. Step forward. (And if Gaston fancies banging a few in it wouldn't hurt. Cheers.)
A few weeks ago this would have been the unstoppable force meeting the immovable object; the league's most potent attacking force versus the meanest defence. But I think, without three of our best players, we're going to leak goals. Which means the only solution is to go and score five up the other end. Sir Daniel of Osvaldoshire, your time has come. Step forward. (And if Gaston fancies banging a few in it wouldn't hurt. Cheers.) St Retford

9:55am Fri 6 Dec 13

St Retford says...

terrence77 wrote:
@Sheffieldsaint

You are so right I'm not saying that Saint is an average Team but I'm saying that they could do with Defo who is better than Osvaldo and Lambert. To be honest I don't think many on here can't disagree on this one He has the pace, a powerful right foot and he can poach goal that's what they need right now because it's good to have 77% possession and many chances but Saint need to score more goals
Jermain Defoe is a journeyman skate cnut.

We might as well sign Steve Claridge.
[quote][p][bold]terrence77[/bold] wrote: @Sheffieldsaint You are so right I'm not saying that Saint is an average Team but I'm saying that they could do with Defo who is better than Osvaldo and Lambert. To be honest I don't think many on here can't disagree on this one He has the pace, a powerful right foot and he can poach goal that's what they need right now because it's good to have 77% possession and many chances but Saint need to score more goals[/p][/quote]Jermain Defoe is a journeyman skate cnut. We might as well sign Steve Claridge. St Retford

10:01am Fri 6 Dec 13

right back in the bar says...

I understand Spider has a good chance of playing tomorrow. Of all the posts on this site in the last few days I didn't see many mentioning how important he is but to my mind and on the evidence of the Villa game there is no shape or cohesion without him. JC deserves another chance and Spider and JC did well last season. So I don't see why we have to be so pessimistic about tomorrow when we should boss the midfield. And can't understand why so many who post on here, who supposedly support the team, are so critical of certain players.
I understand Spider has a good chance of playing tomorrow. Of all the posts on this site in the last few days I didn't see many mentioning how important he is but to my mind and on the evidence of the Villa game there is no shape or cohesion without him. JC deserves another chance and Spider and JC did well last season. So I don't see why we have to be so pessimistic about tomorrow when we should boss the midfield. And can't understand why so many who post on here, who supposedly support the team, are so critical of certain players. right back in the bar

10:08am Fri 6 Dec 13

Beer Monster says...

Lawro has us down to lose 2-0, same result as 10 years ago when that Skate run a dredger through Hythe Pier. I had to cycle all the way home after that. I shall be keeping warm with Mrs Monster in Ayrshire tomorrow, so therefore I'll go for 3-1 Saints with SRL back on the scoresheet.
Lawro has us down to lose 2-0, same result as 10 years ago when that Skate run a dredger through Hythe Pier. I had to cycle all the way home after that. I shall be keeping warm with Mrs Monster in Ayrshire tomorrow, so therefore I'll go for 3-1 Saints with SRL back on the scoresheet. Beer Monster

10:27am Fri 6 Dec 13

St Retford says...

right back in the bar wrote:
I understand Spider has a good chance of playing tomorrow. Of all the posts on this site in the last few days I didn't see many mentioning how important he is but to my mind and on the evidence of the Villa game there is no shape or cohesion without him. JC deserves another chance and Spider and JC did well last season. So I don't see why we have to be so pessimistic about tomorrow when we should boss the midfield. And can't understand why so many who post on here, who supposedly support the team, are so critical of certain players.
If you're right about Spider then I give us half a chance.

Actually, last season it looked as though someone had taken the entire City squad out on the lash the night before we played them. Can someone do that again, please?
[quote][p][bold]right back in the bar[/bold] wrote: I understand Spider has a good chance of playing tomorrow. Of all the posts on this site in the last few days I didn't see many mentioning how important he is but to my mind and on the evidence of the Villa game there is no shape or cohesion without him. JC deserves another chance and Spider and JC did well last season. So I don't see why we have to be so pessimistic about tomorrow when we should boss the midfield. And can't understand why so many who post on here, who supposedly support the team, are so critical of certain players.[/p][/quote]If you're right about Spider then I give us half a chance. Actually, last season it looked as though someone had taken the entire City squad out on the lash the night before we played them. Can someone do that again, please? St Retford

10:43am Fri 6 Dec 13

terrence77 says...

@St Retford

And so what if he played for Pompey he's a spurs at heart. The only reason why he played for Pompey was for money and to increase his chance to play for England the fact is Defo is better than Lambert and Osvaldo and Defo wants to be in Brazil 2014 and Saint can give him a chance he wants to go we all now that why not give him a chance
@St Retford And so what if he played for Pompey he's a spurs at heart. The only reason why he played for Pompey was for money and to increase his chance to play for England the fact is Defo is better than Lambert and Osvaldo and Defo wants to be in Brazil 2014 and Saint can give him a chance he wants to go we all now that why not give him a chance terrence77

10:58am Fri 6 Dec 13

Costa Baz says...

The biggest problem is the inability to turn possession into clear cut goal scoring opportunities.

This, plus a lack of pace, up front, is why we have struggled for goals all season.

As said above, Suarez is the player that makes Liverpool as good as they are, and if we truly want to be considered capable of gate crashing the top four, he is the type of player we need to be seeking, during the January transfer window. We are also desperately short of creative players, capable of splitting defences, with passes the strikers thrive on. Unfortunately our best player for doing this, is the one we want on the end of the passes, Rickie Lambert.

People will point at the 21 goal attempts we had against Villa, as proof that we are creating chances, but when they are looked at more closely, very few would be considered "should have scored" chances.
The biggest problem is the inability to turn possession into clear cut goal scoring opportunities. This, plus a lack of pace, up front, is why we have struggled for goals all season. As said above, Suarez is the player that makes Liverpool as good as they are, and if we truly want to be considered capable of gate crashing the top four, he is the type of player we need to be seeking, during the January transfer window. We are also desperately short of creative players, capable of splitting defences, with passes the strikers thrive on. Unfortunately our best player for doing this, is the one we want on the end of the passes, Rickie Lambert. People will point at the 21 goal attempts we had against Villa, as proof that we are creating chances, but when they are looked at more closely, very few would be considered "should have scored" chances. Costa Baz

11:00am Fri 6 Dec 13

Costa Baz says...

terrence77 wrote:
@St Retford

And so what if he played for Pompey he's a spurs at heart. The only reason why he played for Pompey was for money and to increase his chance to play for England the fact is Defo is better than Lambert and Osvaldo and Defo wants to be in Brazil 2014 and Saint can give him a chance he wants to go we all now that why not give him a chance
Defoe has already committed to signing for the US league, so why discuss him?
[quote][p][bold]terrence77[/bold] wrote: @St Retford And so what if he played for Pompey he's a spurs at heart. The only reason why he played for Pompey was for money and to increase his chance to play for England the fact is Defo is better than Lambert and Osvaldo and Defo wants to be in Brazil 2014 and Saint can give him a chance he wants to go we all now that why not give him a chance[/p][/quote]Defoe has already committed to signing for the US league, so why discuss him? Costa Baz

11:00am Fri 6 Dec 13

notaclue says...

I thought this article was spot on.
The squad we have is no where near top 4 BPL standard and wthout signings I think people are expecting a bit too much from our academy to fill in all the gaps in quality in the next two years. The academy will only povide a couple of players a season max and they will have to be rotated and protected.
Tom Ince and Defoe would both be welcome and neither of them are top 4 standard at the moment.
I thought this article was spot on. The squad we have is no where near top 4 BPL standard and wthout signings I think people are expecting a bit too much from our academy to fill in all the gaps in quality in the next two years. The academy will only povide a couple of players a season max and they will have to be rotated and protected. Tom Ince and Defoe would both be welcome and neither of them are top 4 standard at the moment. notaclue

11:16am Fri 6 Dec 13

terrence77 says...

@Costa Baz

No defo hasn't committed to anything yet
@Costa Baz No defo hasn't committed to anything yet terrence77

11:34am Fri 6 Dec 13

Costa Baz says...

terrence77 wrote:
@Costa Baz

No defo hasn't committed to anything yet
Reports 1 week ago that he had agreed a move to Canadian club, Toronto, to play in Major League Soccer, for £90,000 per week.

This not happening now?
[quote][p][bold]terrence77[/bold] wrote: @Costa Baz No defo hasn't committed to anything yet[/p][/quote]Reports 1 week ago that he had agreed a move to Canadian club, Toronto, to play in Major League Soccer, for £90,000 per week. This not happening now? Costa Baz

11:40am Fri 6 Dec 13

terrence77 says...

@Costa baz

Speculation from the tabloid mate !
@Costa baz Speculation from the tabloid mate ! terrence77

12:49pm Fri 6 Dec 13

deepheat says...

Talking of injuries.

What do you call a Mexican Footballer with a rubber toe?
Roberto
Talking of injuries. What do you call a Mexican Footballer with a rubber toe? Roberto deepheat

12:58pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Rising_Son says...

mbetts wrote:
This is a game I don't have any great expectations from, so could be ideal to give Cody his debut.
And what evidence have you got that he's better than Gazzaniga?
[quote][p][bold]mbetts[/bold] wrote: This is a game I don't have any great expectations from, so could be ideal to give Cody his debut.[/p][/quote]And what evidence have you got that he's better than Gazzaniga? Rising_Son

1:35pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Rising_Son says...

notaclue wrote:
I thought this article was spot on.
The squad we have is no where near top 4 BPL standard and wthout signings I think people are expecting a bit too much from our academy to fill in all the gaps in quality in the next two years. The academy will only povide a couple of players a season max and they will have to be rotated and protected.
Tom Ince and Defoe would both be welcome and neither of them are top 4 standard at the moment.
If you want us to be top 4 standard, why do you want to sign two players who you say are not top 4 standard?
[quote][p][bold]notaclue[/bold] wrote: I thought this article was spot on. The squad we have is no where near top 4 BPL standard and wthout signings I think people are expecting a bit too much from our academy to fill in all the gaps in quality in the next two years. The academy will only povide a couple of players a season max and they will have to be rotated and protected. Tom Ince and Defoe would both be welcome and neither of them are top 4 standard at the moment.[/p][/quote]If you want us to be top 4 standard, why do you want to sign two players who you say are not top 4 standard? Rising_Son

1:47pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Saint 2701 says...

In one word; no.
In one word; no. Saint 2701

2:01pm Fri 6 Dec 13

donni1437 says...

Pointless article, short answer 'No' for champions league football. Next. We've not had 2 seasons in the prem and people are expecting a champs league squad?

LOL to Defoe and Suarez(like) being mentioned as players we need. People need to get real. A 31 yo and a £40M+ player that any side in the world needs. Pass me the coffee as you fellas need to smell it. One loss to a side we should have beat and the panic button is being firmly pressed.
Pointless article, short answer 'No' for champions league football. Next. We've not had 2 seasons in the prem and people are expecting a champs league squad? LOL to Defoe and Suarez(like) being mentioned as players we need. People need to get real. A 31 yo and a £40M+ player that any side in the world needs. Pass me the coffee as you fellas need to smell it. One loss to a side we should have beat and the panic button is being firmly pressed. donni1437

3:14pm Fri 6 Dec 13

mbetts says...

Rising_Son wrote:
mbetts wrote:
This is a game I don't have any great expectations from, so could be ideal to give Cody his debut.
And what evidence have you got that he's better than Gazzaniga?
As much as anybody on the outside, my question is why not play him? We know what Gazzaniga can do.
[quote][p][bold]Rising_Son[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]mbetts[/bold] wrote: This is a game I don't have any great expectations from, so could be ideal to give Cody his debut.[/p][/quote]And what evidence have you got that he's better than Gazzaniga?[/p][/quote]As much as anybody on the outside, my question is why not play him? We know what Gazzaniga can do. mbetts

3:18pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Blackknight says...

Saints need to address the lack of pace, up front, and a decent defensive utility
player would make a sensible January addition to the squad..
Saints need to address the lack of pace, up front, and a decent defensive utility player would make a sensible January addition to the squad.. Blackknight

3:37pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Saint Jinx says...

At least we haven't conceded 4 in a match - yet!
At least we haven't conceded 4 in a match - yet! Saint Jinx

3:39pm Fri 6 Dec 13

loosehead says...

Top ten before Christmas then relegation? I remember it well with McMenemy in charge I hope fpr all Saints fans(footie) this isn't history repeating itself?
Why can we produce such good out field players through the youth but what about goalies?
Top ten before Christmas then relegation? I remember it well with McMenemy in charge I hope fpr all Saints fans(footie) this isn't history repeating itself? Why can we produce such good out field players through the youth but what about goalies? loosehead

4:47pm Fri 6 Dec 13

st1halo says...

donni1437 wrote:
Pointless article, short answer 'No' for champions league football. Next. We've not had 2 seasons in the prem and people are expecting a champs league squad?

LOL to Defoe and Suarez(like) being mentioned as players we need. People need to get real. A 31 yo and a £40M+ player that any side in the world needs. Pass me the coffee as you fellas need to smell it. One loss to a side we should have beat and the panic button is being firmly pressed.
Well said mate.
DeFoe doesn't even make the first eleven at Spurs and would add nothing to our squad that we don't have already.
As for Suarez, couldn't beat your description donni, people need to get a grip!

We're not gonna win every game and only one team has outplayed us (for 15 mins only) so far this season. We are building. Reasons to be cheerful.

STID
[quote][p][bold]donni1437[/bold] wrote: Pointless article, short answer 'No' for champions league football. Next. We've not had 2 seasons in the prem and people are expecting a champs league squad? LOL to Defoe and Suarez(like) being mentioned as players we need. People need to get real. A 31 yo and a £40M+ player that any side in the world needs. Pass me the coffee as you fellas need to smell it. One loss to a side we should have beat and the panic button is being firmly pressed.[/p][/quote]Well said mate. DeFoe doesn't even make the first eleven at Spurs and would add nothing to our squad that we don't have already. As for Suarez, couldn't beat your description donni, people need to get a grip! We're not gonna win every game and only one team has outplayed us (for 15 mins only) so far this season. We are building. Reasons to be cheerful. STID st1halo

5:57pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Clever Dick says...

loosehead wrote:
Top ten before Christmas then relegation? I remember it well with McMenemy in charge I hope fpr all Saints fans(footie) this isn't history repeating itself?
Why can we produce such good out field players through the youth but what about goalies?
So we have a little losing run by losing to Arse away, Chelski away, totally dominate Villa and get some bad luck, very possibly lose this Saturday to a club which has unlimited resources and all of a sudden we are going to get relegated. Get real. We are 12 points clear of some of the dross at the bottom. Unbelievable.
[quote][p][bold]loosehead[/bold] wrote: Top ten before Christmas then relegation? I remember it well with McMenemy in charge I hope fpr all Saints fans(footie) this isn't history repeating itself? Why can we produce such good out field players through the youth but what about goalies?[/p][/quote]So we have a little losing run by losing to Arse away, Chelski away, totally dominate Villa and get some bad luck, very possibly lose this Saturday to a club which has unlimited resources and all of a sudden we are going to get relegated. Get real. We are 12 points clear of some of the dross at the bottom. Unbelievable. Clever Dick

8:56pm Fri 6 Dec 13

Malcombe says...

We all hope the Team that M P chooses tomorrow will be successful but amazingly before the game against Arsenal Saints were on the verge of going 2nd in the League, it seems Football is like Politics it can all change in a week, we must back his judgement and selection, Chambers, Davies, Cork, Reed Omar will lift there game to match and compete with these world class Players and help raise there confidence to another level because M P has the skills to do this with all those who Play for Southampton FC, I will be there tomorrow in the Itchen Stand to support the only team I have supported for 40 years Southampton FC COYR
We all hope the Team that M P chooses tomorrow will be successful but amazingly before the game against Arsenal Saints were on the verge of going 2nd in the League, it seems Football is like Politics it can all change in a week, we must back his judgement and selection, Chambers, Davies, Cork, Reed Omar will lift there game to match and compete with these world class Players and help raise there confidence to another level because M P has the skills to do this with all those who Play for Southampton FC, I will be there tomorrow in the Itchen Stand to support the only team I have supported for 40 years Southampton FC COYR Malcombe

9:28pm Fri 6 Dec 13

FindAndDestroy says...

The problem we might have is the fact that our initial starting XI were used to playing with each other... switching players might not be a big change but it can change something for sure for the rest of the players..

We don't have much of a problem up in front....but missing Morgan, Victor is and Clyne is a concern.... I will tell you why...

we play high up the field and hunt in packs, which requires a lot discipline, understanding and confidence......

Clyne and Shaw can afford to press knowing that victor and Morgan will watch their backs.....Fonte and Lovren have the same peace of minds,the privilege of having Morgan and Wanyama as protecting shields hence will feel more confident...so will the keeper....

Any privilege in life, when taken away may become a source of discomfort, concern if not a panic.......

I know most of us trying to remain positive here , which is - of course not a bad thing....

But I have the guts to admit that we have a problem here, believe it or not...
MoPo was barely talking about shopping before these plagues of injuries ..... but now i know he is....

My only hope is to see the replacements to live up to what we have been doing so far....

otherwise we will be sliding down the table.....
The problem we might have is the fact that our initial starting XI were used to playing with each other... switching players might not be a big change but it can change something for sure for the rest of the players.. We don't have much of a problem up in front....but missing Morgan, Victor is and Clyne is a concern.... I will tell you why... we play high up the field and hunt in packs, which requires a lot discipline, understanding and confidence...... Clyne and Shaw can afford to press knowing that victor and Morgan will watch their backs.....Fonte and Lovren have the same peace of minds,the privilege of having Morgan and Wanyama as protecting shields hence will feel more confident...so will the keeper.... Any privilege in life, when taken away may become a source of discomfort, concern if not a panic....... I know most of us trying to remain positive here , which is - of course not a bad thing.... But I have the guts to admit that we have a problem here, believe it or not... MoPo was barely talking about shopping before these plagues of injuries ..... but now i know he is.... My only hope is to see the replacements to live up to what we have been doing so far.... otherwise we will be sliding down the table..... FindAndDestroy

2:16am Sat 7 Dec 13

Tirau Dan says...

I'm super proud of the club. and am enjoying the season immensely. Full credit to Nicola for modelling the new way, the Southampton Way.. home grown players, young players and some wonderful brought in talent to learn from at a price the club can live with. Agents fees cut way down, more spent on the care of the team, the training centre and medical facilities. In stead of worrying about the depth of talent we need to trust and support Mauricio and his assistants to make the choices and introductions.. if he were to start 6ft 4in Sam Gallagher up front or Tad Lee in goal (lol).. I'd say well he must have done something very special in training, lets get behind him.. Saints look as if they are gaining confidence up front and could be on the verge of the elusive click as it falls into place.. the injuries just present new lads chances ..The best thing fans can do is fill SMS and sing..28-29k and the odd 30k leaves room for improvement.. ticket sales help pay for the journey.. good on the regulars and occasionals...but if you are on a day off in Soton on a home game day.. try and get along and exercise the vocal chords.. you'll love it win lose or draw... COYR, best wishes from New Zealand.
I'm super proud of the club. and am enjoying the season immensely. Full credit to Nicola for modelling the new way, the Southampton Way.. home grown players, young players and some wonderful brought in talent to learn from at a price the club can live with. Agents fees cut way down, more spent on the care of the team, the training centre and medical facilities. In stead of worrying about the depth of talent we need to trust and support Mauricio and his assistants to make the choices and introductions.. if he were to start 6ft 4in Sam Gallagher up front or Tad Lee in goal (lol).. I'd say well he must have done something very special in training, lets get behind him.. Saints look as if they are gaining confidence up front and could be on the verge of the elusive click as it falls into place.. the injuries just present new lads chances ..The best thing fans can do is fill SMS and sing..28-29k and the odd 30k leaves room for improvement.. ticket sales help pay for the journey.. good on the regulars and occasionals...but if you are on a day off in Soton on a home game day.. try and get along and exercise the vocal chords.. you'll love it win lose or draw... COYR, best wishes from New Zealand. Tirau Dan

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