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Colchester United 0 v 0 Bradford City
SkyBet League Two
Tuesday, 21st January 2020 Kick-off 19:45
Saints At Crystal Palace The Verdict
Tuesday, 21st Jan 2020 23:49

Saints dominated the game at Crystal Palace and came away with a deserved three points that pushed them up to 9th in the table, something no one would have believed was possible only two months ago,

Saints didn't rotate as much as Ralph Hasenhuttl had indicated they would with Jannik Vestergaard preferred to Yoshida and coming in for the injured Bednarek and Obafemi in for the rested Ings the only changes.

Despite dominating the early stages Saints almost gifted Palace an opener Vestergaard losing possession but the home side blasted over, but they paid the price for that miss when Nathan Redmond twisted and turned held off a challenge then fired in a piledriver to make it 1-0.

Shortly after though Saints had to reshuffle with Soares going off and JWP going to right back and Oriol Romeu coming on, Saints went in at the break though well worth the lead, although it took a good tackle from Vestergaard who redeemed his earlier error.

As the teams went off there was an altercation when Zaha pushed Ward Prowse in the face and had words with Jannik Vesterggard.

The second half saw Saints double the lead when Redmond did some good work and slipped the ball to Stuart Armstrong who fired home from well outside the box.

Palace had their attacks but Saints were impressive and the home side ended up without an effort on target, Saints should really have scored a third in the second half with Long and Redmond both having good efforts on target but straight at the keeper.

Again another great team effort from Saints who battled hard to make sure that when they did allow Palace to get a sight of goal they couldn't get a shot on target.

James ward Prowse was magnificent as a makeshift right back refusing to be intimidated by the moody Zaha and let him have things his own way.

So Saints climb to 9th and could have been 6th if they had held on against Wolves, but we can't change the past only the future and who would bet against a top ten finish now if they keep up this form.

Now we can start looking up as we are past the 30 point mark on 31 and 8 points clear of the bottom 3 after a mixed bag of results elsewhere, two more wins should see us safe from the drop, but we can now aim higher than that.

The League is open and Saints have 5th place well within their sights if they can keep things up, the confidence is growing and the players and indeed the fans are starting to believe that this season might just be successful after all.

This win though means we can now also put out a strong team against Spurs on Saturday in the cup with the pressure off in the League, credit to Ralph Hasenhuttl who has turned things completely round.

Photo: Action Images



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schatfield added 23:56 - Jan 21
what a brilliant game. Totally in control throughout, 2 great goals and ward prowse has Zaha in his pocket the whole game (no mean feat). Redmond played amazing too, in fact most of the team did. The only one that made me nervy was Vestergaard - a few times his passes and tackles were not great, but we were lucky that Tosun couldnt hit a barn door in this match (and his replacement Connor Wickham was even worse).

Anyway fab win and 9th place!
8

AmericanSaint added 01:29 - Jan 22
Well well well. Look at us know. There is a total team effort and we are playing as one. We fought for every ball and Redmond thunder shot was classic. I think the key is the lads believe now and know that they can win anytime if they put their minds to it. Since the 2-2 draw with Arsenal (Nov 23) we are pretty much averaging 2 goals a game and that leads to many wins. Best away form in the Prem since Dec according to the pundits. The 442 formation and high press is really fitting our boys. One thing I expected was Yoshida to play instead of Vestagaard, who almost cost us. I do think Tots will be a hard game on Sat, but they are fragile right now, so another win is very realistic especially as their defense if shaky. We keep this up and all the supposed "big" clubs keep faltering and who knows how high we can finish. COYR.
3

landerwal added 01:58 - Jan 22
A really good result, especially only three days after the Wolves game. It does show that we now have a team that can come back strongly from a setback. The stats say it all. We had most of the possession and Palace didn't have a shot on target, nor did they win a corner. If only our home form was as good as our away form, we would be sitting in 5th place today. Conversely, if the reverse was true, we would be well and truly in the relegation zone.
8

Peterx added 04:55 - Jan 22
When we start getting Redmond, Armstrong and Long scoring as well as Ings I feel we will be able to take it to even another level the way we are starting to play.

Romeu played excellently coming in & Vestegaard after he got over a slow start I felt did OK. JWP was immense at RB, but we either need Cedric injury to be minor or Valery back quickly.

Looking forward to having a crack against Liverpool and seeing just how good we are.
5

NigD added 05:35 - Jan 22
Superb team effort again. Well done Ralph. Thank God the idiots calling for his head earlier this season have been silenced!
With just a half decent start to the season and home record we would be comfortably top 4? Frightening but true. Nobody to fear now. Liverpool will have to be at their very best to beat us now. (IMHO)
Exciting times again. Well done to everybody. Serious cup run on the cards? Hope so!
3

PezzaSaint added 06:48 - Jan 22
Still pinching myself, Vestergaard played, Redmond scored, JWP keeps Zaha in his pocket and no Ings in the starting line up! There really is a God 😀
5

davidargyll added 07:36 - Jan 22
Having been one of the idiots calling for Ralph’s head I am truly humbled.
My problem with the team then was they were doing the basics wrong and I didn’t see RH being the man to show them what to do. Vestergaard apart - and he redeemed himself as noted - yesterday’s triumph showed that there has been a remarkable change and they ARE now doing the simple things, like passing and pressing, extremely well. And so the confidence has returned. And boy didn’t it show last night! On Saturday they did look a bit tired in the last quarter but my god they didn’t against Palace. And Redmond, who again I’ve found immensely frustrating, must have been on something last night...What a performance!
More than anything else though, what it underlines is that in the PL this season there is Liverpool and then there is everybody else. Everybody is beatable, you just have to go at them. Which is exactly what we are doing. Press and press and press again and they just don’t like it.
So I really am looking forward to the Liverpool game now, if only to see whether our tactics can work against the best...
6

the_saint added 08:06 - Jan 22
Great saints performance, and JWP omg he was magnificent come on england jwp and ings have to be called up for the next international game as well as Stephen's, McCarthy, bertie & redmond
2

the_saint added 08:09 - Jan 22
Oh and a special mention to Stephen's who also had a great game and his passing was class, made me eat my words after my remarks about him v wolves
4

underweststand added 08:59 - Jan 22
In my reckoning McCarthy only got a 7 ....because he had nothing to do. Jack Stephens got over his "wobble" on Saturday and had my TV commentator raving about his game.
Vestergaard got better as the game went on and as schatfield (commented above) JWP had Zaha in his pocket and still came our as MoM. He looked great at RB.

One can understand Romeu wanting a move - becaue he's not playing - but he put in a shift last night.With Bednarek and Cedric out we may need his services more this season.
Ralph showed he wasn't afraid to start a game withour Danny Ings , and although not scoring - it was certainly Obafemi's best showing so far.

Surely Stuart Armstrong is beginning to find the form we've all been waiting for so long.
Strong runnning, not afraid to tackle hard, and a great goal to cap an excellent game.

Really want see a good Cup showing against Spurs, and who knows.. another good performance like this one and we might even produce a surprise at Anfield.
4

halftimeorange added 09:05 - Jan 22
I'm not sure I want Saints players tired by playing for England as we don't have the strength in depth. I'm not a Redmond fan but I can't fault his effort last night and, as for JWP, where has this player been for the past couple of seasons. The key to last night's victory was winding up their best player consequently reducing his threat. After Saturday an amazing turnaround and I am so pleased to see Armstrong going from strength to strength. Somebody at Saints knew what they were doing when we signed him.
6

1962saint added 09:12 - Jan 22
In all the decades of watching the Saints, I’ve never known such an unusual ratio of home v away performances.
At home it’s tortuous watching such a fragile team that look like conceding every time the opponents attack. Only last Saturday against Wolves this was on show.
Away they look solid and, when taking lead, are reasonably comfortable in seeing the game out.
Two sets of games demonstrate this strange habit:-
Leicester home 0-9, away 2-1. Chelsea home 1-4, away 2-0.

At home we have managed 11 points (20th position) and away we have won 20 points (5th position).
I don’t know the answer - perhaps the management should employ a psychologist or
other similar professional.

Another interesting (and pleasing) stat is first 17 games 15 points, next 7 games 16 points.
How being a Saints fan has improved.
5

beynali73 added 10:29 - Jan 22
If the league race was closer Managerof the season would be between Ralph and the Sheffiled Utd boss. I never lost faith in Ralph but believed he didnt have the correct tools at his disposal. He has done an incredible job over the past 6 weeks and if we keep him for a sustained time he will become our most successful manager.
1

SaintPaulVW added 10:47 - Jan 22
Great performance.

I'm amazed that pundits still seem to say it's tight for relegation this year and we aren't really out of it yet just having a 'recent good run'.

No one of these so called experts seems to be mentioning that Arsenal and Spurs are now getting sucked right into this relegation battle. Interesting few months coming up.
2

LordDZLucan added 12:58 - Jan 22
The answer to your question 1965Saint is that the crowd at St. Mary's has been a little bit fickle (not so much lately) and that has to change. Unconditional support will result in better home performances!
3

underweststand added 15:38 - Jan 22
Further to ....1962saint's comment
...there MAY be something subconcious within the squad about playing at SMS..as it's not as if our poor home form is something that has suddenly "happened".
We've had a long string of poor games, over several seasons with bad results - even back to Claude Puel's time, (and when we finished 8th in his last season) and then it didn't get better under Pellegrino and Hughes..

What we really need is another "Sunderland type result" (remember the 8-0 ) that might go towards re-dressing the balance and give some closure for the Leicester result, AND all those dropped points (often from leading positions) in recent seasons.
The fear factor comes whenever we conceded at SMS and affects both players and fans.

As a long-time fan, I recall when we went season after season at The Dell and rarely dropped more than a dozen points .(.in 42 game seasons) , and ANY time we won an away game was cue for a street party.
I love watching our away games this season, but the atmosphere at SMS becomes very morbid whenever we lose - again and... again.
1

Burlers added 17:30 - Jan 22
Credit where credits due - Ralph did us proud tonight!
Gotta say when I saw the team sheet with Vestergaard in and Danny Ings on the bench, I feared the worst.....
Then the boys on the field seriously stepped up! Redmond clinical and Armstrong brilliant - I for one will be keeping the faith for the rest of the season! COYR`s
2


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