Saints At Derby County The Verdict Sunday, 6th Jan 2019 11:50
As we suspected Ralph Hasenhuttl rang the changes, but few of the players who came into the side did their chances of being first choice under Ralph Hasenhuttl much good.
Ralph's all change side contained only one player who could claim to be a first choice player and it was he Nathan Redmond who was about the only Saints outfield player who could walk off the pitch with his head held high.
Redmond was a constant thorn in the side of the Rams, scoring after only 4 minutes with a goal that was deflected in and then on 48 minutes scoring a contender for goal of the season to give us what looked like a comfortable lead that surely we couldn't throw away.
It was at this time that you hoped that the youngsters would play for a chance to push their claims to play in the Premier League and the fringe players who seem to be in and out of the side like Stephens and Vestergaard would show that they can show composure and maturity and see a game out.
To be blunt our two central defenders were all at sea, a look back at the highlights of the game show them both marking thin air at both goals and indeed in the final seconds when Derby tore us open and should have put us out of the cup.
In fairness after the shock of conceding two soft goals in three minutes we got our concentration back and Elyounoussi should have restored our lead but put his unmarked header straight into the keepers arms, but the same issues still remain, was can't defend no matter who we put in defence.
Saints have to sign a central defender in this window or we could struggle and it must be frustrating for the rest of the squad to see so much good work going forward undone time and time again by schoolboy defending where we just can't seem to mark players or read the game.
The only good thing about this result is that it will now be a game that can count towards Pierre Emile Hojbjergs ban and he will now be able to return a game earlier than expected in the Premier League and can now return against Everton January 19th that is a bonus
Yup, always good to take the positives Nick even when they are so thin on the ground. Nobody can say that RH hasn't done his best to give everyone an opportunity and in all honesty he has been badly let down by several players who don't deserve to pull on the shirt again. Time for the owners to extend their short arms into their deep pockets and back the manager with some serious money or just sell up to someone who shares our unwavering love for the club.
That's about right Nick except that weak defending is not our only failing. Throughout the match hardly a pass forward found its target, in fact our passing in general has become woeful despite Ralph's invocation of keep-ball, we just cannot keep the ball.
It was not a good idea to put Slattery on his debut in the hole to cover the two CB's, the hapless lad was out of his depth all afternoon seemingly overawed by his selection and unable to rise to the occasion and make a difference.
What is clear we cannot play 4-4-2 with such poor CBs as yesterday and if we are to escape relegation it will have to be 3-4-3 or 3-5-2 against the better teams.
For a while I thought we might just pull through with the new coaching set up but that hope is fading by the match and on yesterday's evidence the Hasenhüttl regime is making little difference to what went before. There is only so much a man can do.
We were OK in the first half, largely because Redmond played like superman and ran both our midfield and attack. In the second half inevitably, we found he couldn't win the game all on his own, and he was let down by thew rest of the team. With the exception of Redmond, our defence, midfield and attack were all poor.
The main positive: Redmond just keeps getting better. He was a class above the rest of the team.
We missed Yoshida and Hojbjerg badly. A second positive: we'll be much better when they come back.
A third positive: the man who weakened our squad and wasted so much of the club's money on mediocre players, unsuited to the Premier League, like Carrillo (€22 mill), Hoedt (€16 mill), Gabbiadini (€17 mill), Lemina (€17 mill), Boufal (€18 mill), Elyounoussi (€18 mill) and Vestergaard (€25 mill), has been sacked so we should at last see some common sense prevail and the squad strengthened in this transfer window.
For comparison, Duane Holmes. who cost Derby just €0.6 mill in the last transfer window, played better than all of our players apart from Redmond.
Hasenhuttl is doing exactly the right thing in having a look at all his options, but I have no doubt there will be some players incoming. I can’t believe he wouldn’t have been given some assurances about that prior to joining. Whilst not particularly well known over here previously, the German media were amazed we managed to recruit him with his profile there.
For those expecting instant miracles, don’t forget he is having to make huge changes in tactics, fitness and mentality half way through the season, which is not easy. We need to accept that the remainder of this season is going to be a battle, but he’s capable of keeping us up. If he does, then with some personnel changes in the summer and a full pre-season, I’m confident there are exciting times ahead!
"Saints have to sign a central defender in this window or we could struggle". I would actually change the 'could' to 'will'.
It is going to take a fair while for deLesification to start producing results. The rubbish he paid millions for and put on high wages will not leave all at once (the fact that no one wants them will see to that). It is probably 3 or 4 windows minimum. I have confidence that Ralph can get us above Fulham and Cardiff, with Huddersfield as good as gone already. It's then a case of him staying long enough to get us as far along the deLesification process as possible.
Are your figures right Dirk Doone? Did Elyounoussi and Vestergaard really cost £43 million. We saw yesterday just how well that money was spent...
Good point about the Hojberg suspension. I suspect the replay will be all about which team wants to lose most.
SanMarco, the figures I've given are in euros as they are taken from transfermarkt. But, nearly all of the money we got from selling our best players has now been wasted on buying the mediocre ones we are currently lumbered with, which is why we are now being told that in order to buy any more new players, we have to sell some and, obviously, other clubs will only be interested in taking our best players, not our worst ones.
What other club would want to pay money for players like Hoedt, Vestergaard and Elyounoussie?
So, as you say, the mess Old Les has left us with is going to take a long time to sort out.
I still feel optimistic though as Old Les has finally gone and we have appointed an inspirational manager. who we all have a lot of faith in.
Oh well, on the positive side at least a replay will give an opportunity to those who don't want to part with £30/50 to watch a match a chance to visit St Mary's.Always assuming that tickets are priced at £10/12.Maybe the owners can use the unexpected extra revenue to repair the stadium roof which posters on other sites suggest leaks when it rains?
Same old defensive frailties. My mistake was believing 2-0 up against a Championship side was going to result in a win. What it actually seems to tell the opposition is that now is the chance for them to hit back and we can’t do much about it. I still shudder when I think how some of us thought we thought we’d somehow be better off selling Mane and VVD for £115m to reinvest in improving our squad. West Ham bought Anderson for £40m. He wins games on his own! And us well we just blew it on cr@p!
This is going to take some sorting out as dirk doone says. Other clubs are not going to want to sign a large amount of those overpriced players and even if we subsidise their wages I can’t see them wanting to go to the level of club ie championship that may want them.
That said I would say looking at the performances of Boufal and Carrillo I would take them back and see what Ralph can do with them.
As for the match, overall we didn’t lose with a b team to a decent championship side and the replay gives more game time to Ralph to try out some young players still. Chelsea was only a game ago where we put In a very decent defensive performance and we have Bertie coming back who will surely respond to Ralph and again the replay may be useful for his fitness.
My worry is the news of ings injury as dare I say he is now playing the wrong side of games needing to be played in the gamble we took and we are committed to another 20million there.
I did recently say that I don’t think we will go down if we can keep PEH, Ings and I would now add Redmond to the list on the pitch which we aren’t at the moment. For me I am not sure Fulham are worse than us with any of the three above missing or will be after the window ? They have money.
Buckle down this is going to be an exciting and close run thing on our survival especially if the owners show the same buying and selling strategy and risk taking with our future in this window.
This game showed just how weak our squad is. We had no one on the bench that could replace Austin and Long for a plan B. I felt sorry for Redmond he was the only one who seemed to care. JWP was one of the worst today. After this performance Elyounoussi , Prowse, Stephens and Vestergaard need to be sold. The kids that played today are not ready to step up to the first team. Money needs to be spent on 3 or 4 good new players. Just look at what little Bournemouth have done in the transfer market already.