It Is Not All About Youth ! Saints Need Experience In The Transfer Market
Friday, 25th Sep 2020 08:57
Over the past few years Saints transfer strategy has been very rigid, but every team needs balance and we have a glaring deficiency in the centre of our defence that can only be fixed by an experience.
It is fine to pursue a transfer policy that looks to identify and buy good young up and coming players and turn them into world beaters, but every pupil needs a teacher and when it comes to the centre of our defence we are learning nothing and continue to make the same old mistakes.
I have been banging on about it for four years and perhaps now some will now start to sit up and listen, the way that Crystal Palace, Brentford and Spurs banged 8 goals past us in only 3 games is totally unacceptable, if you were happy with the way these goals were scored and feel that most other Premier League defences would have let all of these goals in, then there is no need to read on, skip to the bottom of the page and tell me that I just have something against Jack Stephens etc. Put bluntly VAR has been our best defender so far this season, it has rescued us fro what would have been much worse defeats.
I love Ralph Hasenhuttl as a manager but he has to get a grip of the situation, he has to break the transfer policy mould and get someone in who is a leader, not just for their playing capabilities, but for their ability to "teach" those around them.
Look back over Saints historywould Mark Wright have been so good if he didn't have Chris Nicholl to show him the ropes, Claus Lundekvam became the mentor for the likes of Michael Svensson & Dean Richards, Jose Fonte taught Toby Alderweireld and Virgil Van Dyke what was needed in the Premier League.
I am sorry but based on performances in the last four years our current central defenders are not fit to lick the boots of those names I have mentioned and I could add a few more.
Mo Salisu comes to the club with a good reputation, but at 21 he is not the leader we need, he will fail to develop unless we teach him, The Southampton Way is not just about buying good players it is about educating them as well.
It is time to stop the rot, get a grip of the situation and accept that the answer is not currently at the club.
Every great Saints team had a balance of youth and experience, not just in the centre of defence but in other areas, Alan Ball and Jimmy Case were past 30 when they arrived but they were the glue that held the team together and I would say in recent times Steve Davis did the same.
But the urgent need now is to get in someone who knows how to hold a back line together.
But the problem lies a lot deeper than on the pitch, I would say we do not have a coaching staff that can teach our defenders to defend, Kelvin Davis was a club stalwart, but his Premier League experience was sporadic for us and he is not an outfield player, that cannot be a help eiither, we need a defensive coach.
So this transfer window may define Ralph Hasenhuttl at Saints, he has a glaring defieciency in his team, if he fails to deal with it we will truly struggle, like last season we may be able to bail ourselves out by outscoring a few teams, but we will get caught out as many times as we do that and if we want to keep the likes of Danny Ings at the club then we have to do so, he will soon want away if every time he scores he sees that undone by schoolboy defending at the back.
So the task for Ralph is clear, I truly hope he will deal with it now !
Photo: Action Images
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