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Southampton V Tottenham Hotspur The Preview
Wednesday, 21st Apr 2021 13:08

We have to put the disappointment of Sunday behind us and get back to the job of getting a few more points on the board and making sure we aren't dragged into any late scrapes down the bottom, the question is will the departure of Jose Mourinho have a positive or negative affect on the Spurs team.

Ralph Hasenhuttl may well feel that the cup had distracted his team in recent weeks and certainly in the two defeats to Brighton & West Bromwich Albion the team did not appear focused.

But there is turmoil at Tottenham Hotspur with the departure of the Special One and the question is whether that will spark a positive or negative reaction from the Spurs squad.

Certainly there will be players who will be shedding no tears for the departure of Mourinho, Dele Ali who has started just 2 Premier League games plus another 8 off the bench has become the forgotten man both at Spurs and with England and will hope to get a start and maybe force his way back into Gareth Southgate's plans, likewise Harry Winks who has started just 7 and 3 off the bench in the League and made the same number of appearances in Europe as in the Premier League.

But there will be those who mourn his passing and one of those could be ex Saint Pierre Emile Hojbjerg, he suited the dour style of Mourinho where he could sit back and pass the ball 10 yards, but under a new manager he may himself be surplus to requirements should Winks & Ali be back in favour.

Tonight though no one knows what will happen Ryan Mason is in temporary charge and has little managerial experience above academy level, will he opt to stick with the same formation or revert back to what Spurs fans see as their traditional way of playing.

His choice might be limited for this one though as he has injury problems, Harry Kane looks to be out with an ankle injury and Ben Davies is likely to be missing if he is to stand a chance of playing in the League Cup Final on Sunday, Matt Doherty could return, but he too could be out.

But Mason does have the option of bringing in Gareth Bale as well as Ali & Winks, all three were subs in Mourinho's final game in charge at Everton and only Ali got on the pitch as a last minute sub.

So Although Kane will be a big miss, it is one that Spurs can more than cover.

Bit will Mason gamble, both on a complete revamp of the side after the week's turmoil and on the injury of other key players.

Saints will hope that Spurs will have an eye on the game at Wembley and they can capitalise.

Ralph Hasenhuttl will know he has to freshen things up a little, perhaps he will start at the back, the Bednarek/Vestergaard partnership has not been working of late, is it time to give more game time to Mohamed Salisu.

In midfield could Minamino come in in a wide position and up front Che Adams partner Danny Ings .

Saints need to get something out of this game, not particularly because they need the points to stave off relegation worries, but because they need to get the fans back on side after the run since the turn of the New Year.

We need to get some excitement going and hope for next season and what better place to start than this trip to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Photo: Action Images

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WestSussexSaint added 13:28 - Apr 21
On the personnel front I agree with the suggested changes. Minamino should come in for Walcott and Adams for Redmond who has reverted back to early season form after a couple of bright performances.

Despite the desire to go for it after the non performance in the Semi Final I think that would be foolish against what is a decent Tottenham team even without Kane and an inexperienced manager. I expect it to be kept quite tight for at least the first half but what I do want to see is when we have possession in the opposition half we are more direct and don’t over pass the situation which inevitably slows down play and allows the opposition defence to get organised.

Overall I think this match is more about the performance and less about the result. Any points gained will be a bonus but Ralph must use these remaining games to get on the front foot for next season.

sandywelsh added 13:40 - Apr 21
Team changes are needed and Adams needs to start in place of Redmond. Maybe Minamino in place of Djenepo and I would also like Salisu to start.
Lets hope who ever starts tonight they try a lot harder than they did on Sunday. They need to keep pushing towards the oppositions goal rather than our own, thats the only way to score goals

A1079 added 14:14 - Apr 21
I am not expecting us to win any games between now and the end of the season. As Nick often says, as fans we need to be realistic and manage our expectations and that is what I am doing. Expect to lose and anything else is a bonus.

JWP's nonsense about coming back bigger and better after losing a semi-final are hollow words like all the other hollow words spouted by the players when they have put in a naff performance. I am not interested in what facile after match comments they have to make I am only interested that they go through a match resembling something of a team that is working and trying hard to win a game, even if they lose it.

I hope they win tonight and I hope they finish the rest of the season a damn sight better than they have been for most of the 2nd half of the season - but I am not holding my breath. In reality, I just want the season to end and I suspect - so do the players (given their recent body language).

DorsetIan added 15:13 - Apr 21
Let's give Diallo a rest and Jankewitz another chance, with Armstrong alongside him and Minamino and JWP wider.

I'd try Redmond and Adams in front, with Danny off the bench.

At least 4 changes from Sunday I reckon.


SanMarco added 15:51 - Apr 21
Yes - Diallo was a key problem on Sunday.

I echo the idea that a good performance is overdue. We had a good (and much needed) half hour vs Burnley but precious little else in recent memory. Even without Kane Spuds will probably be too good for us but a rousing 2-3 would be better than a drab 0-2 or another humiliating hammering. I will take my place on my sofa with Nick's pep-talk ringing in my ears - I hope the players were listening too.

wessexman added 17:45 - Apr 21
Interesting to read the author is saying we need to get away from a scrap at the bottom. We are very fortunate Fulham squandered 3 points with 2 last minute goals in their last two games. Our form over the last couple of months has been dire and the semi was such a damp squib. As for Ralph.....this is a results driven industry....... I am sure Ralph is tearing his hair out and his desire for investment is very laudable but......you do fear the club will lapse into the same mistakes which cost us so dearly.

ElijahK added 19:59 - Apr 21
This game has just summed up our seasons really! We have a great first half and we’re all over Spurs but then in the second half have been a shambles among with getting our star player injured!

Honestly I don’t think people can just blame Hasenhurtle as who the hell does he have to pick from when making these changes!? As all the subs he’s made today have been fair and understandable but in the end we don’t have a decent enough squad or enough squad depth to get anywhere at the moment! And that’s mainly down to Gao and the board! I mean I’m not saying that everything should be lifted from Ralph’s shoulders but at the same time we just have a shit owner and poor squad depth!

I mean the likes of Diallo, Djenpo and Redmond just consistently give away the ball and create bugger all! We honestly really need to sort out the squad if we want to get anywhere next season as we need someone to replace Bertrand, a new keeper (as I honestly see no major difference between Forster and McCarthy) along with another centre mid and striker!

This season is now basically over as we’re not getting relegated but we’re not going to get any higher than the likes of 13th! And unless we get in some real investments then I’m just getting fed up and board of the same teams winning every contests and is never achieving anything!

janecook added 20:16 - Apr 21
Well that was another shambles. I have always backed Ralph but I now think it is time for him to go.Cant see us getting any more points this season with Ralph in charge. We need someone like Eddie Howe to take us forward.

felly1 added 21:06 - Apr 21
It's so predictable now it's like a sick joke. Even my non Saints fans friends will message me when we go 1 up to joke about how quick before we throw the lead away!
I honestly cant see another manager doing much better , other than for the honeymoon period that often comes with a new boss.
Pellegrini, Hughes and now Ralph have conclusively shown you cannot make a silk purse from a sows ear.
Out of those three Ralph has done the best job by at least inspiring this mob into some kind of team for short sweet periods where we all get our hopes up before reality dawn's yet again.
I sometimes think we should perhaps try and be a bit more defensive to hold onto a point but I think Ralph knows we simply cant play that way, we dont have the personal to dig in and fight.
It really feels like next season is going to be about whether there is 3 worst teams than us or we bring 3 or 4 new players and pin our hopes that they are quality .

codge added 21:36 - Apr 21
Really don’t see what Diallo and Walcott bring to our team at this time.

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