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Hughes Needs To Instill The Passion
Wednesday, 22nd Aug 2018 14:37

The defeat at Everton was characterised by a first half that was missing all that was good about the last few games of last season, passion, confidence and drive, Mark Hughes needs his team to find that and fast.

Those who watched the game at Goodison Park noticed that from the off Saints seemed to lack any read energy and passion for the game, whereas Everton played with the gusto you would expect from a side with a new manager and a few new signings.

Yet we had not of that, we looked like rabbits in the headlights at times with no organisation and leadership.

Last season we had a decent squad, we still have and it is more than capable of a top 10 finish, but what has happened to the intensity and desire we had in the final few games, the hope was that Mark Hughes having found that in the squad could keep the momentum this season and with the addition of a few new players could take us forward.

I believe he can do that, but we have to find a structure to our team and leadership not only off the field but on it.

In the first halves against both Burnley and Everton the players looked lost, as if they didn't really know their jobs in the line up and it only needed one or two to be out of sync and soon the rest follow, of course the usual suspects are blamed, but it is more than that.

I think that Mark Hughes firstly has to find out his best line up, I'm not sure that he knows it yet, certainly he is also making some strange selections including the ommission of Hojbjerg from the starting line up in both games.

It hasn't helped that already there are injury problems, defensively the arrival of Vestergaard looked a good piece of business and the ideal man to add strength to the side and counter balance the skills of Hoedt, hopefully he will be back against Leicester City.

Likewise Stuart Armstrong has looked an absolute bargain, but he was not fit to start at Goodison and of course we all have high hopes for Elyounoussi to be another star.

But although Hughes injury woes did not help his selection dilemmas, that wasn't the problem, it was a complete lack of passion and determination that caused our downfall and left us a mountain to climb.

If Hughes can find that on Saturday then hopefully we can beat Leicester and start to move forward, if we don't then the knives will be out.

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DorsetIan added 15:47 - Aug 22
I think we might all have to be a bit patient. The majority of this team has been part of very disappointing 18 month period and that takes it toll on the players' psyche. It is inevitably going to take a bit of time for the new players to bed in properly, for Hughes to work out his best starting 11 and for a bit of confidence and swagger to come back.

What we really need is wins. Two on the bounce at least. And a game in which we score a few. At well as boosting the team, this will give the next opposition something to think about.

Hopefully there will be a turnaround before the new players get disheartened too.


helpineedsomebody added 15:50 - Aug 22
he has had 5mths to find the right attacking playing system.
he also must know all of the players now, he is the conductor, the players play the way his staff are teaching them.
what ive seen of the 1st 2 games of the season MH is not the right manager for sfc all ive heard is lots of WIND coming from him & the players + 2 directors.

1970 added 19:14 - Aug 22
I wonder what hughes will do against Leicester ,he set about tiring burnley out so we could sucker punch them in the last 20mins but it didn't work , he put out what he thought were his two quickest defenders to cope with everton's Walcott and richarlison so will he pick a team to try and stifle Leicester, for me it doesn't matter what he does because we are a poor team with a poor manager I thought we were looking as a club to play high pressing attacking football like pochettino brought to us however with the master bielsa available we gave the job to hughes so we're see what our contrasts will be this season with Leeds, we've lost heavily to Leicester twice now so without any additional quality I expect the outcome to be the same,i'd love for us to win and if we do I think my outlook for the rest of the season will be optimistic but lose and I'm afraid we are no better than last season and we all know what happened coyr 3 points please.

SanMarco added 22:29 - Aug 22
I worry more about quality than passion. At our best a couple of seasons ago it was generally having better players than the other lot that made the difference. We need the new players to show their worth in that respect because last year's league table tells us all we need to know about the quality of those that are not new...

montecristo added 07:06 - Aug 23
Saints just dont seem prepared to spend the sort of money needed to attract top players to the club. Im afraid Vestergaard and Ings excluded I dont see the quality needed to win games in the Premiership. Austin seems washed up Gabbiadini a back up only JWP not premiership class and most of the others would not hold down a place at a top six team.We could not beat Bournemouth at the moment.

Keesie66 added 08:14 - Aug 23
Dusan banging them in @ Ajax, dont tell me it is a lesser league as he is scoring in the CL too!!!! I think Saints will be fine this season as long as we keep our new signings fit they already seem crucial at this early stage and we missed them v Everton (Vestegaard & Armstrong) ..... COYS!!!

straight_pass added 09:07 - Aug 23
It is very tempting to join those who feel the squad is not good enough, but that would not be objective. We see several lower budget and apparently weaker squads playing well together and getting results. Watford, Burnley and to a lesser extent Crystal Palace have all punched above their weight in the last couple of seasons. Getting decent performance from a set of average players is all about training and management..... this is now our problem area, once it was a strength!

bstokesaint added 12:02 - Aug 23
Spot on Straight Pass. It’s far too easy to jump on the bang wagon to Doomsville. There are worse squads with better team mentality than us. I think the additional players we have acquired over the summer have plugged some of our previous deficiencies. All four of the new signings have looked like upgrades to me. As a club we are far too quick to jump on the manager’s back when things don’t start well. The first two games have been disappointing, but then again I still don’t feel like we’re playing our best team. I don’t think Hoedt or Stephens are up to the job at the moment and I’d play a back four with Yoshi and Vesti with 4 in the middle with either Romeu, or more deserving perhaps Hoijberg. sitting in front protecting instead of playing 5 across the back (i.e. the way we used to play successfully). Then mix it up up top until we find the front 2 pairing that’ll get us goals. We have different strikers for different games, but we don’t have one that create something out of zero service – they’re rare (and expensive!). I’d also question Bertrand as captain. I might be wrong but his seemingly moody temperament doesn’t give the impression he can lift the team.

BoondockSaint added 13:24 - Aug 23
I really thought Hughes had installed that passion last year when he came in. The players started to play like they really cared.

Before he showed up, it looked like they were all planning where they were going after the Saints got relegated. Under the previous two managers, the players looked like they weren't really bothered whether we won or lost (nor did the board).

But now in the first two games, it seems they have reverted to their old ways. Very disappointing. If this doesn't get sorted in the next 2-3 games, we will be in trouble.

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