Whats The Issue With Yan Valery ?
Tuesday, 1st Oct 2019 09:31
Last season Yan Valery was a vital member of Ralph Hasenhuttl's side in the second half of the season, yet now he cannot get any game time even when we have a crisis in his natural position.
Yan Valery broke through into the Saints first team last season and looked a class act, whether employed as a full back in a back four or as a wing back he looked the part and added pace going forward chipping in 2 goals in 20 appearances plus 3 as sub.
His breakthrough and form meant that Ralph Hasenhuttl was quite content to let Cedric go out on loan to Italy and rely on the youngster.
Initially this season it looked like Cedric might be off again even on loan or permanently with Valery again starting ahead of the Portugese defender who remained an unused sub in our opening three fixtures.
In those games Valery was not at his best, but in fairness he was no worse than some of his team mates and there weren't many Saints fans who were critical of him or who predicted that he would struggle to get a game.
In the third game of the season at Brighton he came off shortly before the hour mark for Moussa Djenepo and since then although he has been on the bench for every game, he has failed to get on the pitch for even one minute.
Indeed a few days after Brighton he was on the bench at Fulham in the League cup, that seemed normal though, after all he was an established first team regular, so it was assumed that he was having a rest.
Suddenly though Cedric was preferred, but more than that everyone else was also preferred with Kevin Danso, Jannik Vestergaard, Cedric and Yoshida not to mention Djenepo all being selected or used as a sub ahead of Valery even when it seemed that the young Frenchman was a natural replacement.
In fairness Cedric keeping him out at right back you could see, but at times it seems that Ralph Hasenhuttl has preferred to completely reshuffle his team rather than play Valery.
This came to a head at Spurs on Saturday, when the team came out Cedric was in it and we appeared to be about to play a back four with Cedric at right back, Bednarek and Yoshida in the middle and Bertrand at right back.
With Cedric injured in the warm up the natural thing to do would be to slot Valery in for a straight swap with little change needed, but Ralph opted to completely change the formation and bring in Vestergaard to play in a back three.
That took pace out of the equation at the back and we paid the price for that.
As mentioned in the 6 games in both League & Cup he has been an unused sub there have been reasons in virtually all of those games why he should perhaps have come on being the natural player, but the manager has still used others out of position rather than play Valery.
So what is the issue that the manager has with Jan Valery, certainly nothing has been said so far, the player himself has appeared to be nothing other than a model professional, he has said nothing publicly and just seems to get on, sit on the bench and not get a game.
He has now not played any football in six weeks and that is very strange.
If the manager has a problem with him and is not going to play him under any circumstances then why put him on the bench in the first place, it is only wasting a space, at Spurs because of the injury to Cedric we only had 6 subs instead of 7, aside from Keeper Harry Lewis the two unused subs were Valery & Kevin Danso a player who also seems to be out of favour and yet to play in his natural position and who should really have started if the manager wanted to opt for a back three as he did.
The Saints supporters are baffled, although they are solidly behind Ralph Hasenhuttl, they struggle to see what the problem in and therefore whispers are starting of trouble in the camp fuelled by Ralph's comments about Cedric pulling out of the game so late.
It will be interesting to see the Saints line up against Chelsea on Sunday, who will be in or out and will Ralph replace those out with the natural replacements or will it be a case of square pegs in round holes again.
Photo: Action Images
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