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Southampton 1 v 2 Liverpool
Barclays Premier League
Saturday, 17th August 2019 Kick-off 15:00
Danso In Line For Debut
Friday, 16th Aug 2019 10:17

If there is one team that you probably don't want to make your debut against it is Liverpool, but at least for Kevin Danso it will only get easier should he start against the European Champions.

Ralph Hasenhuttl probably has little choice but to give Kevin Danso a baptimism of fire and throw him into his defence against Liverpool at St Mary's this weekend.

His other central defensive choices aside from Jan Bednarek who despite his inexperience rarely comes off the pitch with any criticism being able to be levelled at him, is one of calamity and chaos.

Jannik Vestergaard improved in the second half of the season and is just about worth his place, but he proved last week at Burnley that he is a stopper not a leader, he needs someone organising him otherwise he loses concentration.

Jack Stephens may well be a good club man and the same can be said of Maya Yoshida, but the reality is that every Saints fans know the problem since Van Dijk and Fonte left and being blunt these two have played the majority of those games between them and are not part of the solution, nothing against them, but they would not get into any other Premier League team so to be blunter they should not be in ours at least not as first choice and no one can deny this is a problem area.

That only leaves Wesley Hoedt and it seems that the Dutchman himself does not see his long term future here, he played in pre season, but is conspicuous by his absence since the final pre season games, if Hasenhuttl is willing to play Boufal then why not put Hoedt in the squad ? Only reason I can see is that the player himself wants to go.

But Ralph knows that he has to do something different for the visit of Liverpool so that only leaves one option left and that is new signing Kevin Danso.

When questioned whether fellow summer signing Moussa Djenepo and Danso could be handed a start, Hasenhuttl had this to say:

“It depends on the history they have, in what club they played, what habits they have learned.

“Some players need longer, some players it takes a short time to get adapted to our game."

“Kevin is now three times with us on the pitch and showed he has good qualities, a young player and is open-minded so let’s have a look.”

So it seems that the Austrian is not afraid to throw in his fellow countryman, perhaps he feels that Moussa Djenepo will need a little more time and a slow introduction, but he also knows a little more about Danso and the fact is that he has brought him in to solve a problem, the only question is when he makes his debut, not if.

This being the case then he has nothing to lose by putting him in he needs strength and athleticism in the centre of his defence, he could desperately do with organisation, but he will not get that with Stephens or Yoshida his only two realistic options, so he has nothing to lose with Danso.

Photo: Action Images

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highfield49 added 10:56 - Aug 16
Having played most of my football as a central defender I would have struggled with a three player system. It's so much simpler to build a rapport with one other as per VVD and Fonte, you know where the other player is and adapt your position, with a third player on the wander life gets difficult! I'd play Bednarek and Danso with a long term view of them forming a partnership regardless of the result against Liverpool. With Romeu and Hojbjerg, taking on the roles of Wanyama and Schneiderlin, in front of a back four we could start getting some strength and consistency into the defensive core.

Gadge60 added 12:19 - Aug 16
Yoshida played very well at the end of Puels tenure. He seems to need game time to get up to speed. I think that he has always been a fantastic servant to the club. To suggest he isnt good enough is somewhat unfair. I guess that the only reason he isnt played these days is because H prefers younger players and so he doesn't fit into the current thinking.

KriSaint added 12:34 - Aug 16
I agree. Let him play against Liverpool. Kevin Danso.
If Ralph is brave enough to give Ramsay his debut vs City, he is certainly brave enough to play Danso vs a somewhat heavylegged, tired Liverpool team tomorrow.
We could really k-i-c-k-s-t-a-r-t our season with a good result vs Liverpool.

legod7 added 12:48 - Aug 16
Same old Nick. Once again having a go at Yoshida. Why not change the record it’s getting a bit monotonous. He is just behind Bednarek as our best centre back in my opinion. After last Saturday neither Stephens or Vestergaard should be anywhere near the first team again.

SaintBrock added 12:52 - Aug 16
Nowhere near ready to start but may be on the bench just for the stadium experience and what he has signed up for.

schatfield added 13:05 - Aug 16
I dont get why you say Ralph 'probably has little choice' in this - of course he has a choice, we have 6 defenders on the books! We know Bednarik will start for sure. Yoshida is decent and has pace too, sometimes loses concentration but not a bad defender. Why would you throw a kid who has been here 1 week up against the european cup winners? way to destroy a kids confidence for the rest of the season there!!

1970 added 13:07 - Aug 16
'Legod7' there is something you are not quite getting about yoshida and that he wouldn't get into any other team in the prem,and the mistakes he has made during his saints career have by far been more outrageous than any other of our inept defenders we know everyone makes mistakes and we accept that but yoshida has not learned a thing from his mistakes since the day he signed,
I know stephens and vestergaard are liabilities as well but they have been a little less but still never first choice in any prem side,i know you are entitled to your opinion as am I but that is mine.
as long as danso gets the support from his team mates then I have no problem sticking him in but if they all run away when he has the ball then I fear for his mentality but we have nothing to lose do we coyr

A1079 added 13:53 - Aug 16
Whilst Yoshida has his frailties, he surely has to be above the pecking order of Stephens and Vestergaard. I cannot comment on Hoedt as I have not seen anything of him for such a long time, I would not know whether has improved or not, but I get the impression he does not want to play for us anyway.

Yoshida has something else that too many players at Saints these days don't - passion and desire to play for the club and team and puts the interest of the club above that of personal interest. Ok, I accept, that by a long way, that does not make you a good player or an automatic choice, but when you see the quality of our other defenders, Yoshida is in my view a step above Stephens and Vestergaard.

Bednarek is generally showing more promise, though, I didn't think he was great last week either, but I would stick with him. If Danso does play, well, I just hope we don't judge him on one game whichever way it goes.


saintmark1976 added 17:33 - Aug 16
As I posted earlier in the week it shows the depth of total ineptitude to which the owners and management team have sunk that we even need to consider playing Danso.He's twenty years old,never kicked a ball in any competitve game for the Saints and has been at the club just a week.To suggest that he starts tomorrow is something out of a Roy of the Rovers comic.

Play Bednarek and Yoshida in a four man back line with a four man midfield (without the lightweight J W P) and two forwards neither of which should be the unfortunate clearly unfit Ings.

saintjf added 19:31 - Aug 16
1970. You are quite right. The fact that Yoshi is being considered as a serious option shows what trouble we are in.

aceofthebase added 20:51 - Aug 16
I thought that we had bought these players to boost our performance. If we have to train them how to play first then why bother. I expected both our buys to be playing and I don't mean Ings.

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