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samsami
26-10-15, 07:34 PM
http://s6.postimg.cc/cjsodcqfl/bbcsport.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Breaking News - Samsami moves to Saints!


http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

This remarkable news was announced by BBC Sport late last night and confirmed by Southampton Football Club this morning.

More news will follow soon!

AJ
26-10-15, 08:08 PM
ahhhh. Bring it on!

ebfatz
26-10-15, 09:30 PM
Was always going to be.

Good luck!

Vèrkûh
26-10-15, 09:37 PM
He's back already!

JayFlo
26-10-15, 09:49 PM
100% following as a Saints fan!

Feel free to hire me as fans liaison officer.

Redknapp69
26-10-15, 11:17 PM
will be watching this :ranger: :ok:

samsami
27-10-15, 07:46 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Press Conference with new Saints manager

On Monday 13th July 2015, there was a press conference for journalists and reporters where they were introduced to the new Saints manager.

These are some notes from that press conference.

Why Saints, sir?

I was ready for a new challenge after my years with Feyenoord and with Tottenham. Southampton has a good team and there's the Feyenoord connection, of course. Koeman started that and I'm sure we can attract more Feyenoord players if we need to.

http://s6.postimg.cc/7q8x8htxt/fey.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

So are you planning to change the squad drastically and sign many more Feyenoord players in the near future?

Probably not in the first year. Unless players insist on leaving the club, of course. Then I won't stop them. But first I want to get to know our players better and see how well they perform, week after week.

What is your expectation for this first season?

Well, the Board expects 'a respectable league position' this season. That seems fair enough and we shall see how far we can get. We definitely aim for European football, of course. And then we shall need to sign more players. But like I said, first of all I'd like to get to know the team better. And that will take time.

One thing is certain, though. This will be my biggest challenge so far. After that horrible relegation in 2005 things looked very, very bleak for some years. Since 2012 we have been back in the Premier League ending in 14th, 8th and 7th position. The challenge is to make it one step further every year now!

One last question, sir. When it was announced on Friday that you moved to Southampton the phrase 'his last bow' was used by one of the journalists. Was he quoting you?

I have no idea who he was quoting. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, I presume.

Thank you very much, sir, and good luck!

samsami
28-10-15, 08:10 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat FC Aarau in Switzerland

We already had to play our first Intertoto Cup match in Switzerland on 18th July against FC Aarau. And the team made a very good first impression! Juanmi (who replaced the injured Sadio Mané) scored the opening goal after just two minutes!

After that first goal Wanyama found the net twice while Tadic scored a penalty to give us a 4-0 lead at half time!

In the second half we seemed to have run out of steam, though. However, as this is only our first match since the summer holidays there's no reason to worry.

The nice thing is that these kind of games can help the team develop and mature before the Premier League season starts.

http://s6.postimg.cc/go7fb2qj5/Aarau.png (http://postimage.org/)

Because the whole team played well we cannot draw any conclusions yet and even though our opponent was not all that impressive a 4-1 victory is always a good way to start the season!


http://s6.postimg.cc/c0wrvkdsh/Aarau_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/uj5ptjky9/Aarau_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

AJ
28-10-15, 08:45 AM
what .tct is this?

samsami
28-10-15, 09:14 AM
what .tct is this?

For now the same as I used with Spurs. That worked really well, at least we conceded very few goals that way.

http://s6.postimg.org/c3pu9vw7l/Squad.png (http://postimage.org/)

Not sure if I will continue to use this, though. I might try Jay Rodriguez as AMC. And we have Ward-Prowse who might like that role, but he's still young.

zionmaster
28-10-15, 09:54 AM
Is it no WIBWOB tactic???

samsami
28-10-15, 11:32 AM
Is it no WIBWOB tactic???

It's a Wib/Wob tactic that I have adapted, but I have installed the strongest AI tactics (http://www.champman0102.co.uk/downloads.php?do=cat&id=11).

So that makes it extra challenging.

I also used these AI tactics in my Feyenoord Story and my Spurs Story. It makes it tough as you can tell when you have checked out my two previous stories.

Redknapp69
28-10-15, 01:43 PM
easy win

Ahhhhhhhh - I'm somewhat disapointed it's a wib wob tactic - never realised you did that - not a fan of them myself :(

Usually stop reading stories that do have them but I like your writing style so will obviously keep following :) :ok:

samsami
28-10-15, 01:51 PM
easy win

Ahhhhhhhh - I'm somewhat disappointed it's a wib wob tactic - never realised you did that - not a fan of them myself :(

Usually stop reading stories that do have them but I like your writing style so will obviously keep following :) :ok:

Thanks! And like I said, the computer uses very strong Wib-Wob tactics. As you have seen in my previous stories, it's a huge challenge to win the title, even with Feyenoord. It keeps things remarkably realistic.

I also hate using Wib/Wob tactics against default computer tactics. That makes things very, very boring.

samsami
29-10-15, 08:37 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat FC Aarau at St.Mary's as well

With the exact same lineup as in the first leg we played the return match against FC Aarau at St.Mary's.

After a pathetic first half and a much needed half-time team talk the lads seemed to finally realise that they have to prove themselves; Wanyama set the example by scoring after just six minutes and he went on to find the net two more times to score his first hat-trick of the season!

http://s6.postimg.cc/imiomt8ep/Aar.png (http://postimage.org/)

So not a bad a game, after all. And if there's one player who has made his mark in these first two test matches it's Victor Wanyama!

Another player who has surprised us in a positive way so far is Juanmi. As long as Mané is injured Juanmi gets to play and he seems keen to grab his chance.


http://s6.postimg.cc/nvdpkoqtt/Aar_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/o9f1kaaxd/Aar_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

We will give them all another chance in the next two Intertoto Cup matches against Spartak Trnava.

Redknapp69
29-10-15, 08:42 AM
The DM lynchpin has an eye for goal :shocked:

samsami
29-10-15, 08:48 AM
The DM lynchpin has an eye for goal :shocked:

lol....yes.....5 goals in two matches :)
But Aarau can't be taken seriously.

JayFlo
29-10-15, 11:35 AM
That's already over doubled his Saints tally IRL!

Juanmi and Ramirez both get minutes in the cup IRL but are knocking on the door to start :)

Where have the assists come from? Bertrand, Mane, Tadic and JWP are the main culprits normally :)

Any eyes on transfers?

samsami
29-10-15, 12:17 PM
That's already over doubled his Saints tally IRL!

Juanmi and Ramirez both get minutes in the cup IRL but are knocking on the door to start :)

Where have the assists come from? Bertrand, Mane, Tadic and JWP are the main culprits normally :)

Any eyes on transfers?

Assists have come from Bertrand, Clasie, Soares, Tadic and Juanmi.

No transfer news yet!

ebfatz
29-10-15, 06:39 PM
Just realised that this means you have Gallagher back in your squad again doesn't it?

Will he get games like he did for Spurs?

samsami
29-10-15, 07:02 PM
Just realised that this means you have Gallagher back in your squad again doesn't it?

Will he get games like he did for Spurs?

Correct, but I'm afraid he's not nearly as good as before the October update: CR=111 PR=113

Coys
29-10-15, 07:37 PM
That's a bug Samsami. He's 113 CR and -1 potential in editor. Happens to 100's of players who seem to load with their PA the same as their CA.

samsami
29-10-15, 07:45 PM
That's a bug Samsami. He's 113 CR and -1 potential in editor. Happens to 100's of players who seem to load with their PA the same as their CA.

I checked and you're right. Oh well, happens in IRL, too. Many youth players seem to have lots of potential and yet never make it.
Perhaps it's not a bug? Perhaps -1 means a random number (starting at 0) added to the current rating?

Coys
29-10-15, 07:54 PM
No. -1 and -2 are random potential values:

-1 PA:

90% chance for the potential being between 80-160
10% chance for between 120-200

-2 PA:

90% chance for random between 120-199
10% chance for random between 160-198

JayFlo
29-10-15, 08:09 PM
Gallagher will never play regular PL football for Saints - if I am wrong.....well I won't be.

samsami
30-10-15, 08:18 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints eliminate Spartak Trnava

http://s6.postimg.cc/r0bce6qj5/o_spartak_trnava.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

We had to play the away game in Trnava first and this time the match was decided by a late goal by Jordy Clasie who played a one-two with Juanmi and scored with a fierce strike!

We played well as a team. The lads realise now that they shall have to give the full 100% to earn their place in the squad, but they are also simply getting used to each other while Juanmi is playing better every time!

Unfortunately, Fonte had to go off injured. Yoshida replaced him and he played decently enough.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4kajd2769/Spar.png (http://postimage.org/)

A solid game which we definitely deserved to win.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ami63jvm9/Spar_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/6rjdeq1u9/Spar_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


http://s6.postimg.cc/pntncat3l/juanmi_signs_for_southampton_june_2015.png (http://postimage.org/)
Will Juan Miguel Jiménez López become the revelation of the 2015-2016 season?

The return match at St.Mary's was clearly our best game so far.

We scored no less than four times with Pellè actually managing to score his first goal of the season. But it was Juanmi who was our best player to-day with both a goal and an assist.

Now because Wanyama had received a yellow card we brought on Gastón Ramírez, who (as it turned out later) played his last game for Southampton.

http://s6.postimg.cc/lorufqf2p/Trn.png (http://postimage.org/)

It would seem that we are ready for the start of the new Premier League season...

http://s6.postimg.cc/9bf08tpe9/Trn_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/6vd6uz7bl/Trn_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Ramírez leaves Saints

Just before the start of this new Premier League season we completed a deal with Olympiacos. Gastón Ramírez had decided to leave the club and try his luck elsewhere so we chose not to turn down Olympiacos' £6.5M bid.

http://s6.postimg.cc/wffh1espd/Ramirez.png (http://postimage.org/)

So now the season will begin in earnest with an away game against none other than... Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane!!

Redknapp69
30-10-15, 11:47 AM
Solid back to back wins there

Good price for Gaston :ok:

I've always thought back up defenders for Saints may struggle in the big games so will be interesting to see how they fare if any injuries/suspensions occur during season

JayFlo
30-10-15, 12:35 PM
Yoshida is a great pro and IRL can play lb and rb and even DMC, but with Gardos out injured it's only Caulker other than him! Stephens and Turnbull are out on loan and good prospects!

samsami
30-10-15, 10:22 PM
Yoshida is a great pro and IRL can play lb and rb and even DMC, but with Gardos out injured it's only Caulker other than him! Stephens and Turnbull are out on loan and good prospects!

We will need some new players but for now we have enough I think.

What do you think about the 4-1-3-2 formation with Pellè and Mané as striker duo?
That's the formation I used in the Spurs story because nobody played well as AMC (the number 10 position).

If the two-striker tactic doesn't work I'll switch to 4-1-3-1-1 (which is what I used in the Feyenoord story) and try out Ward-Prowse or Mane as AMC behind Pellè.

JayFlo
30-10-15, 11:54 PM
Mane IRL would certainly suit that role. I find my AMCs never perform particularly well on CM though; I still play with them though.

We've not played with wingers for five years now so 4131 isn't "unrealistic."

Most realistic would be to play 2 CBs 3 DML DMR DMC 2 CM CM 2 AMC 1 CF.

samsami
31-10-15, 08:54 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Stalemate at White Hart Lane

So our first league match of the season had to be at White Hart Lane of all places!

Now because Mané was back from his injury we had him play alongside Pellè instead of Juanmi. That was one tough decision, because Juanmi had played so well in the pre-season Intertoto Cup games, but this was Tottenham and not FC Aarau.

As was to be expected, Tottenham played well but we still could have scored after just ten minutes when Pellè hit a volley from way out, but he scooped it just over the crossbar! There were precious few scoring chances after that one moment, but just before half time Clasie fouled Davies and was shown a yellow card.

http://s6.postimg.cc/v2u3oj3rl/Pelle.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè had the best chance to score in the first half, but Lloris kept a clean sheet.

So in the second half we brought on Ward-Prowse for Clasie with Wanyama moving to the defensive midfielder position. That worked well enough and we created a couple decent chances but overall, if truth be told Tottenham was the better team. Their defence especially was simply superb!

For the final ten minutes of the match we brought on Juanmi for Mané, but that made little difference - or perhaps it was too little, too late? - and the game ended in a goalless draw.

A fair enough result considering the fact that both goalkeepers played so well and neither team really deserved to win to-day.

http://s6.postimg.cc/nfkis2sb5/Tott.png (http://postimage.org/)

We were a bit lucky that N'Jie did not have his day, but with Lloris playing so brilliantly we never had a real chance to score any goals, either. Still, not losing the first match of the season is perhaps what mattered most to us.

http://s6.postimg.cc/kisfuog5t/Tott_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/trum4sp1t/Tott_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next League opponent will be West Brom, but first it's Eintracht Frankfurt.

http://s6.postimg.cc/gdml5vopd/Schedule.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
31-10-15, 10:21 PM
Good away draw - could have won it as well but you know how good Lloris is! :)

I'd be pissed off and banging on your door if I was Juanmi - performs in matches then gets dropped!

samsami
31-10-15, 10:30 PM
Good away draw - could have won it as well but you know how good Lloris is! :)

I'd be pissed off and banging on your door if I was Juanmi - performs in matches then gets dropped!

Hey, he got 10 minutes of game time, didn't he? :)

JayFlo
01-11-15, 03:14 AM
Where's Jose?!

samsami
01-11-15, 08:49 AM
Where's Jose?!

Injured. Just a couple weeks.

samsami
01-11-15, 08:55 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Pellè and Mané fail to impress in Frankfurt

On Wednesday, just four days after our first Premier League match, we lost our Intertoto Cup match in Frankfurt where Mané seemed to be struggling while Pellè also has to find his best form yet.

On paper Pellè and Mané may be the ideal striker pair for Saints, but there does not seem to be the necessary click between them. In fact, most shots on goal come from our midfielders.

http://s6.postimg.cc/cbs6ed975/4312.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Mané is back from his injury, but why is he not delivering?

We did not play all that well, but interestingly in every single game so far, including the one at White Hart Lane, we have consistently produced more shots on goal and more shots on target than our opponents. Our strikers just seem to have trouble finding the net, though.

http://s6.postimg.cc/xvmup6n69/Frank.png (http://postimage.org/)

So for the second time in a row we did not score in a match against a fairly strong opponent.

http://s6.postimg.cc/slhvxw2xd/Frank_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/wvwjth80h/Frank_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Mané continues to struggle for form, but Juanmi delivers

Three days later, on Saturday, we had to play West Brom. We needed to win this match after the goalless draw at White Hart Lane in our opening match of the season. And to win we would need to score again!

And sure enough, we played a lot better than in Frankfurt, although Mané was still struggling for form. So when there were no goals in the first half we decided to bring on Juanmi. And once again Juanmi delivered! In the 75th minute Tadic hit the ball ahead of him in the area and Juanmi drove a right-footed shot low towards the goal and found the net! A huge relief for the the team and for the crowd at St.Mary's!

Ten minutes later Wanyama (who else?) scored with a header and so the three points were in the bag!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/vi5dhjpox/AMA298665.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Wanyama keeps scoring important goals...

http://s6.postimg.cc/p10939jgx/Brom.png (http://postimage.org/)

Once again we created more scoring chances than our opponents - but again Mané was our weakest link.

http://s6.postimg.cc/m9gzcnky9/Brom_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/5x6xmx6mp/Brom_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
01-11-15, 01:27 PM
Unfortunate against Frankfurt but I don't see Mane as a striker

Juanmi scores again then :whistle:

samsami
01-11-15, 03:06 PM
Unfortunate against Frankfurt but I don't see Mane as a striker.
Juanmi scores again then :whistle:

I think you might be right. I think I will give up on the striker partnership idea.

JayFlo
01-11-15, 08:12 PM
Ooooo lets see the new tactic then!

ebfatz
01-11-15, 11:57 PM
Mane will not be a long term solution I don't think.

Will need another forward alongside Pelle.
Unless you go one up front of course.

samsami
02-11-15, 08:56 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints qualify for UEFA Cup

In our midweek match we managed to defeat Eintracht Frankfurt this time and Mané actually found the net, albeit with an easy finish after Pellè had hit the ball in low and Rensing could not hold onto it.

We played very well as a team but even though Mané scored a goal he still looked a bit lost playing alongside Pellè so next Wednesday, when we play Hammers in our third League match, we will start with a new formation. We have a full week to try it out in training and we shall need that. It's a match we really have to win!

http://s6.postimg.cc/w7sr7nfm9/Southampton_FC_Stadium_8.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Saints qualify for the UEFA Cup by defeating Frankfurt at St.Mary's

And it hardly comes as a surprise that Wanyama was important again to-day. He may be playing out of position, but he is by far our club's top scorer!

Jordy Clasie also managed to find the back of the net for the second this season. He is having a good first season at Saints. Clasie is actually the reason that Wanyama is playing as central midfielder now.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ss0my3idt/SOuth.png (http://postimage.org/)

Wanyama was named Man of the Match. As long as he plays like this he is indispensable to Saints. Yoshida was also brilliant to-day!

http://s6.postimg.cc/pz7fe2i1d/South_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/we6gaqor5/South_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

This victory means that we have qualified for the UEFA Cup and our first opponent in this European competition will be FC Minsk.

http://s6.postimg.cc/uvb25ri6p/UEFA1.png (http://postimage.org/)

But for now we shall have to focus on the Premier League as we will be playing West Ham a week from to-day. We have relatively 'easy' opponents at this early stage of the Premier League season, which could be an advantage but it does mean that we have to win as many matches as possible and we cannot afford making mistakes.

Redknapp69
02-11-15, 11:38 AM
Amazing win there as that was a tricky game given the first leg

Decent 1st round opponents as well

samsami
02-11-15, 12:48 PM
Amazing win there as that was a tricky game given the first leg

Decent 1st round opponents as well

For some reason a much better start than with Spurs! And what's this with Wanyama being the club's leader scorer!?!

Mark
02-11-15, 03:07 PM
Just read the story from start to finish :ok:

Does Last Bow mean that you won't be writing another story after this? Hope not!

Good to see that you've decided to test the squad out first before signing players. Great fee on Gaston.

Nicely navigated your way through to the UEFA Cup after that hiccup in Frankfurt.

Get Wanyama signed up to a new deal :D

samsami
02-11-15, 03:29 PM
Just read the story from start to finish :ok:
Does Last Bow mean that you won't be writing another story after this? Hope not!
Good to see that you've decided to test the squad out first before signing players. Great fee on Gaston.
Nicely navigated your way through to the UEFA Cup after that hiccup in Frankfurt.
Get Wanyama signed up to a new deal :D

Good to see you back, Mark!
And yes, my first goal is to test the squad and have the best players sign a long-term contract!
Mané and Ward-Prowse want new contracts and Wanyama I'm not sure yet.
Ward-Prowse insisted on having a minimum fee release clause of just 4.5M and I don't want that!!!

samsami
03-11-15, 06:17 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Pellè and Mané successful against Hammers

A week after we defeated Eintracht Frankfurt we played West Ham at St.Mary's using our formation. To the surprise of many of our fans Ward-Prowse played as attacking midfielder right behind Pellè, our lone striker, while Mané played as attacking central midfielder. This meant that Rodriguez dropped back onto the bench.

We had a long talk with Mané and Ward-Prowse earlier this week since they were unhappy about their contracts, and they have now indicated that they like their new roles and both of them have just signed a new contract, even without the minimum fee release clause that Ward-Prowse insisted on earlier!

http://s6.postimg.cc/a4x4hxioh/New_Formation.png (http://postimage.org/)

And the new formation worked like a charm to-day! In fact, all three of them played exceptionally well. After just seven minutes Ward-Prowse laid the ball off, Tomkins tried to intercept but he could not control the ball and Pellè scored with a simple finish!

http://s6.postimg.cc/8diebmkep/pelle_saints_510621.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè scored his second goal of the season with the assist coming from Ward-Prowse...

Five minutes into the second half Mané scored our second goal with the assist coming from Wanyama. So it would seem that we really are on the right track. At least we are winning our games against the so-called 'weaker' teams!

http://s6.postimg.cc/4fgvxmci9/Hammers.png (http://postimage.org/)

Remarkably, though, for the first time this season with this new formation we created fewer scoring chances than our opponents, but we outplayed them nevertheless!

http://s6.postimg.cc/mh00vf6j5/Ham_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/4i0rkgg5t/Ham_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next match will be away against Leicester City, another great opportunity to try out our one striker formation.

Mark
03-11-15, 01:13 PM
Good win and great to see the duo signing new deals :ok:

JayFlo
03-11-15, 04:12 PM
#WeMarchOn

samsami
03-11-15, 05:02 PM
#WeMarchOn

It's a good start but it can't last! With Spurs we reached 4th place in our first year. With Saints that is not possible.

JayFlo
03-11-15, 08:05 PM
Believe to achieve! It is possible! I think I finished 6th in my first season with Saints on last update!

"Oh oh oh it's magic, you know! Tadic and Graziano!"

Redknapp69
04-11-15, 12:50 AM
good that you got the min fee removed from Ward prowse

Suprised he is so far up the pitch - I thought he was a CM (although creative) at best? Would have thought Tadic or Man better suited to that position?

Lovely win and a clean sheet - woot!

ebfatz
04-11-15, 01:05 AM
It is indeed a great start.

Wanyama has started like a train.
Good squad morale currently is very much helping.

samsami
04-11-15, 06:37 AM
good that you got the min fee removed from Ward prowse
Surprised he is so far up the pitch - I thought he was a CM (although creative) at best? Would have thought Tadic or Man better suited to that position?


I'll have to try all them them out at that position. With injuries and such we'll need them all!

samsami
04-11-15, 06:43 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Mané injured as Saints defeat Leicester

Four days after defeating West Ham United we had to play Leicester City, who should not be underestimated as they had just beaten Liverpool!

Fortunately their goalkeeper seemed to have an off-day and Wanyama scored an early opening goal with a header so things looked good for us, but then Mané had to go off injured! This was a bit of a blow since he had just found his niche in our team and signed a new contract.

http://s6.postimg.cc/vt4wuptjl/injury.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Mané had to go off injured early on in the game...

We brought on Rodriguez to replace him and fortunately Pellè immediately scored our second goal, also with a header, to give us a comfortable lead. However, just before half-time Inler scored from a free kick and we realised that the game was not over yet!

In the second half we had little difficulty with Leicester, though. With some thirty minutes to go we brought on Davis for Clasie, because he had just been shown a yellow card, and minutes later it was Rodriguez of all people who blasted the ball towards the top corner to score our third goal of the day!

We then brought on Juanmi for Pellè in the last 20 minutes but there were no more goals, just a yellow card for Juanmi.

http://s6.postimg.cc/8ws2yn175/Lei.png (http://postimage.org/)

Good team-play and yet again three important points for Saints!

http://s6.postimg.cc/h1073dnm9/Lei_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/h3k2q7r9t/Lei_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints underestimate Minsk

On the following Thursday we defeated Minsk by a single goal scored by Jay Rodriguez(!) with the assist coming from Pellè. The club from Belarus can hardly be called a formidable opponent and we certainly outclassed them, but we failed to score more goals, even after Juanmi had replaced Pellè.

http://s6.postimg.cc/8dmzpd9sh/jay_rodriguez_574805.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Rodriguez found the net for the second time this week...

Perhaps we underestimated Minsk, or perhaps it's our busy schedule that's taking its toll, but we shall have to do a lot better when we play them in the second leg at the Torpedo Stadium.

http://s6.postimg.cc/hivcj8d75/Minsk.png (http://postimage.org/)

Rodriguez was named Man of the Match. Apparently he did not like being dropped back onto the bench and wants to make the most of this opportunity while Mané is injured. This could make things interesting when Mané comes back from his injury, though!

http://s6.postimg.cc/6i07e7ky9/Minsk_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/tys2cz6j5/Minsk_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

In three days time we'll be playing against Watford, followed by a midweek match against Aston Villa. After that we'll have to face some of the big guns!

JayFlo
04-11-15, 03:39 PM
On Ward Prowse he's a funny one. Constantly compared to Beckham for his set piece ability, which is very good, and leadership qualities, but he's not a winger, not an anchor, not a number 10 - he just is.

samsami
05-11-15, 07:57 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat Watford

On Sunday 20th September we defeated Watford as Pellè showed his value for Saints by scoring both goals, the first one within three minutes from the rebound and the second one in the 84th minute with a header.

http://s6.postimg.cc/98el8inyp/pelle.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè scored his fourth and fifth goal of the season to-day

Once again we played very well as a team, but then again, Watford hardly posed a threat to our lads. In fact, they ended up with no less than five yellow cards!

http://s6.postimg.cc/u49lrvhzl/Wat.png (http://postimage.org/)


http://s6.postimg.cc/9ljb0jtg1/Wat_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/637b45sk1/Wat_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints crush Aston Villa

With Mané back from his injury - and playing brillianty! - we crushed Aston Villa. Our lads were on fire and it looks like no-one can stop us! Wanyama even scored a hat-trick!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ca9yw7qhd/Southampton_v_Aston_Villa.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Mané is back from his injury and excels as Saints humiliate Aston Villa

After Richards had been sent off we brought on three subs who all deserved to get game time (Rodriguez, Juanmi and Targett) but there were no more goals, not even against ten men.

http://s6.postimg.cc/zapcgnm4x/Villa.png (http://postimage.org/)

We know this good phase can't possibly last forever, but for now things look pretty good from our perspective!

http://s6.postimg.cc/p4gqxo1qp/Villa_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/pv9h3g441/Villa_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So is this the "Samsami effect" as some fans are saying? Or is it just because we have not played any of the 'big guns' yet? So far Saints have only dropped two points at White Hart Lane in our first League match of the season.

http://s6.postimg.cc/gsz8l0pg1/Table6.png (http://postimage.org/)

Wanyama and Pelle are on fire. Wanyama is even the club's topscorer! But really, everybody has been doing incredibly well so far. The only thing we lack is the necessary squad depth for this long season.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4n0dzrf0x/Ratings.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/9qn2a80r5/Goals.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/5k27uw15d/Assists.png (http://postimage.org/)

The real test will come in the next five matches, though, as we will have to play Everton (who are still undefeated), Minsk, Chelsea, Bournemouth and, after the long international break, Man Utd.

Mark
05-11-15, 11:29 AM
Looks like a lot of your players have hit the ground running, good to see. Let's hope they can keep it up against the big guns.

JayFlo
05-11-15, 08:08 PM
'We have a Kenyan, a Mighty Kenyan, called Victor Wanyama! We have a Kenyan, a Mighty Kenyan, called Victor Wanyama! A-wooooooooooooooo, ooo ooo a wimba waaaaaaaaaaaay, A-woooooooooo, ooo ooo a wimba waaaaaaaaaaaay"

Come on Saints!

ebfatz
05-11-15, 08:44 PM
One conceded thus far is a great start.

Hope you can keep it up.

samsami
06-11-15, 07:44 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Everton prove too strong for Saints

It had to happen some time of course, but it still did not feel good to loose our first Premier League match of the season to Everton at Goodison Park.

The early goal by Lennon did not worry us too much yet, but as the game went on it slowly became clear that our unbeaten start to the Premier League season would be ground to a halt here.

http://s6.postimg.cc/9apqn8tsh/lennon.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Lennon was matchwinner and even Wanyama could not prevent Saints' first loss of the season

Everton were still undefeated. They had only conceded two goals in their first four league matches and it became perfectly clear to-day that they have a team to be reckoned with this season!

http://s6.postimg.cc/cbxouuwgh/Eve.png (http://postimage.org/)

A disappointing match for us, but Everton deserved to win this time.

http://s6.postimg.cc/syf93xpe9/Ev_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/mna1nio5t/Ev_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Goalless draw in Minsk enough for Saints

Four day later we had to play FC Minsk again. After having defeated them 1-0 at St.Mary's earlier this month a draw was enough for us to qualify for the UEFA Cup Second Round, but it was another very disappointing match in Minsk.

And what's worse, both Mané and Fonte had to go off injured. Mané will be out (again!!) for about three weeks with a groin strain and Fonte will be out with strained knee ligaments, also for three weeks. Rodriguez and Yoshida will replace them, as they did in this match as well.

http://s6.postimg.cc/k2nb2c98x/fonte.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Jose Fonte had to go off injured, just like Mané

And for the second time in four days we did not find the net. This could prove to be a serious dip - and our next opponent, in just three days, will be Chelsea!

http://s6.postimg.cc/x48zs6xn5/Minsk.png (http://postimage.org/)

We should have scored at least one goal...

http://s6.postimg.cc/x2z1yrvtd/Minsk_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/dnoa5o2j5/Minsk_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

With the match against Chelsea on Sunday we could have wished for a better result to-day!

Redknapp69
06-11-15, 09:59 AM
Great league form despite Everton defeat

Defence looks very solid

Unspectacular against Minsk but job done

3 week injuries to the guys not ideal

Mark
06-11-15, 11:52 AM
Unlucky with the Everton defeat, shame you couldn't keep the unbeaten run going before facing the big teams.

Mane does seem to be injury prone!

samsami
06-11-15, 12:00 PM
Unlucky with the Everton defeat, shame you couldn't keep the unbeaten run going before facing the big teams.

Mane does seem to be injury prone!

http://s6.postimg.org/qpnr0qv2p/Mane.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
06-11-15, 12:20 PM
:( Did you get a rehab option? Reminds me of your Gallagher situation at Spurs!

samsami
06-11-15, 12:50 PM
:( Did you get a rehab option? Reminds me of your Gallagher situation at Spurs!

Indeed! I'm afraid no rehab option this time, though.

ebfatz
06-11-15, 01:26 PM
Bit of a problem with him being injury prone.

Ship him out come January I reckon.
Sure there will be possible replacements.

JayFlo
06-11-15, 07:27 PM
What are Mane's stats like in the update? We certainly won't willingly let him go in January!

samsami
06-11-15, 09:15 PM
What are Mane's stats like in the update? We certainly won't willingly let him go in January!

Agreed!

Tadic, Wanyama, Mane, Rodriguez, Ward-Prowse (plus Davis and Reed) are what we have as regular midfielders and those first five are all much-needed.

But we'll have to see what we do with Mane now that he is injured for the third time already! At some point rehab will be needed.

kuy
07-11-15, 01:34 AM
I think in the game there's a difference between "carrying a long-term injury", which can be fixed by surgery/rehab, and "injury prone" which can't...

samsami
07-11-15, 07:30 AM
I think in the game there's a difference between "carrying a long-term injury", which can be fixed by surgery/rehab, and "injury prone" which can't...

That would be a shame. We'll just have to wait and see then.

samsami
07-11-15, 07:37 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints no match for Chelsea

For the third time in seven days we did not score a single goal as we lost our second consecutive Premier League match, this time to Chelsea.

It started out by Clasie holding Pedro and receiving a yellow card in the very first minute of the game. Things went from bad to worse when Rodriguez - who was filling in for the injured Sadio Mané - had to go off injured as well. Romeu replaced him and he played decently enough but we were obviously no match for Chelsea.

http://s6.postimg.cc/s8nqjgr0x/Romeu.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Romeu had to replace Rodriguez who was filling in for Mané against Chelsea...

It still took almost 50 minutes before Pedro finally scored the opening goal, but we never looked good enough in this match. Like Clasie, Van Dijk and Bertrand also received yellow cards and Chelsea should have finished the job by scoring a second goal but for some reason they did not. And in fact, we have to say that our defence did play quite well.

And two minutes into extra time we even thought we had equalised when Romeu scored, but it was ruled out by the linesman's flag because Tadic was offside. And it would have been too much for us to equalise.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4dujl3lch/Chel.png (http://postimage.org/)

Chelsea was by far the better team and in fact, we did not produce a single shot on target...

http://s6.postimg.cc/wcopbymz5/Chel_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/dmwpv7u8h/Chel_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Hopefully we will get out of the dip when we play Bournemouth in six days!

Mark
07-11-15, 10:14 AM
A lack of shots on target is a worry but it is Chelsea who as you will remember are near unbeatable at the start of a new save!

Interesting to see what you decide to do with Mane, hopefully if you can get someone of better quality in then it won't seem so bad to sell him. He's certainly worth keeping IRL.

Redknapp69
07-11-15, 10:17 AM
Always a 'bonus' game this

Take the positives that you didn't get battered

samsami
07-11-15, 10:55 AM
A lack of shots on target is a worry but it is Chelsea who as you will remember are near unbeatable at the start of a new save!
Interesting to see what you decide to do with Mane, hopefully if you can get someone of better quality in then it won't seem so bad to sell him. He's certainly worth keeping IRL.

Interestingly, Chelsea is not that unbeatable IRL - at least not this season :)


Always a 'bonus' game this
Take the positives that you didn't get battered

"Always look on the bright side of life"

ebfatz
07-11-15, 12:19 PM
Seems I'm the only one in the 'Sell Mane' camp.

Although Mark seems to be swaying my way a little!

kuy
07-11-15, 12:58 PM
No shame in getting beaten by Chelsea, and it seems like Everton are a good side this season - the key is to bounce back with a good win against Bournemouth :ok:

samsami
07-11-15, 01:26 PM
Seems I'm the only one in the 'Sell Mane' camp.

Although Mark seems to be swaying my way a little!

Well, he started the season being injured and he has been injured twice since, first against Leicester and then against Minsk. So I am swaying your side, too. But, he is one of our star players (and one of the best paid ones, too).

http://s6.postimg.org/4nflenahd/Mane.png (http://postimage.org/)

samsami
08-11-15, 09:03 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Relief for Saints after narrow victory over Bournemouth

Saints fans breathed a huge sigh of relief when Wanyama (and yes, of course it had to be Wanyama!) ended Saints' 312-minute goal drought at Dean Court to-day.

Because both Mané and Rodriguez are injured we started out with Steven Davis as central midfielder against the bottom-of-the-league team and in the 23rd minute we finally scored a goal again. Soares crossed to the far post from the right and Wanyama headed the ball towards the goal and found the back of the net! A much-needed goal after these last three disappointing matches!!

Unfortunately, disaster struck just before half-time when Wanyama had to go off injured! We brought on Romeu to replace him, but Wanyama's injury comes at the worst possible moment.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4edfaz8b5/Victor_Wanyama_552053.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Wanyama is the next one who could be out for weeks...

Pellè, Tadic, Davis and even Bertrand attempted several shots on goal but we failed to score more than the one goal. In the end that goal turned out to be just enough to win this match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/958pf9brl/Bourn.png (http://postimage.org/)

An important and much-needed victory after a rather bleak week.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ioie8pz9t/Bourn_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/5a5bcoslt/Bourn_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

And as it turns out, Wanyama will be out for about three weeks with a sprained ankle. This means that currently Fonte, Mané, Rodriguez and Wanyama are all injured, in addition of course to Forster.

At least we have a 12-day international break now before we will be playing Rijeka in the UEFA Cup Second Round at St.Mary's, so hopefully Rodriguez at least will be back from his injury by then.

http://s6.postimg.cc/59mfmt5n5/Table9.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
08-11-15, 11:22 AM
Horror run of injuries! Losing Wanyama is definitely a big blow!

Redknapp69
08-11-15, 02:23 PM
Win most important thing

Int'l break at perfect time with injuries!

samsami
08-11-15, 02:35 PM
Horror run of injuries! Losing Wanyama is definitely a big blow!

Yes, there's nobody left to score goals for us now.


Win most important thing.

Int'l break at perfect time with injuries!

Absolutely. Lack of serious squad depth.

JayFlo
08-11-15, 03:04 PM
Maybe a formation shuffle to make the use of what players are fit.

The fans would understand sacrificing the cups for the sake of a top 4 finish!

samsami
09-11-15, 07:21 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints easily defeat Rijeka

Rodriguez was fit just in time for this European match so he played as central midfielder, filling in for Wanyama with Davies replacing the injured Sadio Mané.

But remarkably it was Soares who found the net for Southampton! It started when Davis tried his luck with a fierce strike, but Maric pushed the ball away, only for Soares to pounce on the rebound and take the ball on his right foot and bury it in the top corner! And that was the early opening goal which we needed so desperately!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ka6us0o9d/cedric1.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
In the 11th minute Cedric Soares scored his first ever Saints goal

Soares also provided the assist for our second goal when he came forward with Siklic in close attention. Soares then put a low cross into the near post and Tadic fired it in low and hard and found the back of the net!

And to cap things off nicely, in the second half Ward-Prowse also scored his first goal of the season. And again it started with Steven Davis who drove the ball in low. Maric parried it but Ward-Prowse went for the follow up and scored!

So with this 3-0 victory at least we won't have to worry too much about the return match in Rijeka.

http://s6.postimg.cc/xymutnk5t/Rij.png (http://postimage.org/)

We seem to be back on track again, at least in this European competition. Soares was named Man of the Match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/5n1awm09d/Rij_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/dtxw1xfpt/Rij_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Next we shall have to play Man.Utd. Another huge challenge for our lads!

Redknapp69
09-11-15, 10:38 AM
nicely done there

toughie next!

Beardo
09-11-15, 01:31 PM
Just caught up with this, easy to read and well presented.

Good luck with all the Injuries

Mark
09-11-15, 02:09 PM
Solid win there despite the injuries and playing Rodriguez at CM.

kuy
09-11-15, 02:24 PM
3-0 win is an excellent result, gives you bit of breathing space for the second leg regarding injuries/tiredness :ok:

ebfatz
09-11-15, 04:58 PM
No faith in Romeu?

Thought he would be the one to come in for Wanyama.
His not the greatest but would do a job better than Rodriguez dropping into midfield? Gives you another forward option that way as well.

samsami
10-11-15, 07:05 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Man Utd prove too strong for Saints

It's probably best not to say too much about this match. Rooney was brilliant and scored with a fierce shot after just two minutes and the rest is history.

Even the fact that Ward-Prowse succeeded in scoring from a free-kick for the first time this season did not make the result more bearable for us or for our fans. We are just going to have to forget about this game and focus on the next one.

http://s6.postimg.cc/xq918tfpt/Romeu.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Romeu played very well, but Rooney was the Man-of-the-Match

Ward-Prowse and Romeu, who replaced Clasie in the second half, were actually our best players to-day while Stekelenburg had an obvious off-day.

We have had a more than fantastic start of the season, but it should be obvious that we are still no match for the likes of Man Utd and Chelsea; we shall just have to be realistic and not let to-day's result affect us too much.

http://s6.postimg.cc/5okfhigup/Utd.png (http://postimage.org/)

Man Utd outplayed us, but there are days when we especially miss Fraser Forster!

http://s6.postimg.cc/5pudaxioh/Utd_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/7k77so5ox/Utd_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Even though we have now lost games to Everton, Chelsea and Man Utd we can still look back at a great start of the season!

http://s6.postimg.cc/g16q3ladt/Table10.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/rmcaxk6hd/Schedule.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
10-11-15, 12:10 PM
Ouch!

Definitely a painful result but one where your injuries finally caught up with you. As you say though, still a great start to the season and hopefully you can make up for those defeats in the next batch of games which look winnable.

kuy
10-11-15, 12:18 PM
Rooney was brilliant

This game is so unrealistic sometimes :lol:

samsami
10-11-15, 07:38 PM
This game is so unrealistic sometimes :lol:

Fortunately not too much at all! Anything can happen. Look at Chelsea this season IRL!


Ouch!

Definitely a painful result but one where your injuries finally caught up with you. As you say though, still a great start to the season and hopefully you can make up for those defeats in the next batch of games which look winnable.

Yes, that's why I posted that batch of games. But you never know!

Redknapp69
10-11-15, 08:33 PM
Keeper had a 'mare

But always tough against a 'bigger' team

Nice batch of games coming up but could they be potential banana skins?!

ebfatz
10-11-15, 08:48 PM
Interesting fact for you.

When I was managing my Sunday League side, my goalie for a season and a bit was Paulo Gazzaniga before he got snapped up by Gillingham.

Be interesting to see if he ever gets a game for you.
Maybe he will if Stekelenburg keeps playing like that!

samsami
11-11-15, 08:08 AM
Interesting fact for you.
When I was managing my Sunday League side, my goalie for a season and a bit was Paulo Gazzaniga before he got snapped up by Gillingham.
Be interesting to see if he ever gets a game for you.
Maybe he will if Stekelenburg keeps playing like that!

Would be interesting, but I'm afraid he's leaving the club!

samsami
11-11-15, 08:13 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints advance in the League Cup

We played a fairly decent game in Wales and managed to qualify for the League Cup 4th Round - but it wasn't easy!

Fonte was back from his injury but he obviously lacks match rhythm. On the other hand, he had not been playing all that well even before his injury.

It was Rodriguez who scored the only goal of the match after Bertrand had floated the ball into the area from the left. Rodriguez got up above Bartley, powered a header at goal and found the net! In fact, that was one of only three scoring chances we created in the entire match!

http://s6.postimg.cc/6cunmkudt/jay.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Jay Rodriguez scored the deciding goal in Wales

It wasn't our best game of the season, but Soares played very well, as did Stekelenburg this time! And after last Sunday's match against Van Gaal's team we very much needed this win!

http://s6.postimg.cc/qza6gez0x/Swan.png (http://postimage.org/)

Both goalies were in top form to-day.

http://s6.postimg.cc/5bl85yymp/Swan_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/z6267zp3l/Swan_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent will be Stoke City. Clasie will be suspended for that match and Wanyama is still injured, so Romeu will get game time again.

Mark
11-11-15, 10:13 AM
Good old Jay Jay :ok:

Missing some key players for the Stoke game!

samsami
11-11-15, 07:03 PM
Good old Jay Jay :ok:

Missing some key players for the Stoke game!

Yes, reality is hitting us after that exceptionally great start!

Redknapp69
11-11-15, 08:05 PM
You got lucky in South Wales!

JayFlo
11-11-15, 08:22 PM
Still following - been on nights this week :)

samsami
12-11-15, 08:40 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Stoke City hold Saints to a draw

Mané was back from his injury but Clasie was suspended for this match so Romeu replaced him and we had Yoshida fill in for Fonte who has been struggling lately to find his form again. But with only Wanyama and Forster still injured we were optimistic about this game.

Stoke were optimistic as well and they came out with an attacking formation, but we created the first scoring chances. And in the 10th minute Tadic found the net when he scored the opening goal for Saints!

http://s6.postimg.cc/68dv9m5zl/tadic.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Tadic scored his fifth goal of the season to-day

But after that opening goal Stoke wrestled back control of the match and after half an hour it was Adam who scored. Fortunately it was ruled out though, because Walters had strayed into an offside position.

Still, it was a good warning for us and because both of our central defenders, Van Dijk and Yoshida, had received yellow cards we decided to bring on Fonte after all. Unfortunately, Fonte did not play well at all and less than two minutes after he came on Adam already managed to equalise!

Stoke remained the better team, also in the second half, and Boyan alone produced half a dozen shots on goal but somehow we survived Stoke's onslaught.

In a final attempt to change things around we brought on Juanmi for Pellè and Davis for Mané, who was invisible, but it made very little difference. And in the end it might actually be more correct to say that we held Stoke to a draw than the other way around.

http://s6.postimg.cc/8uk6z2ifl/Stoke.png (http://postimage.org/)

There's nothing wrong with our defence, but Pellè has trouble finding the net and having Ward-Prowse play behind him as attacking midfielder has not really helped much at all. In fact, based on shots on goal and shots on target Stoke could have and should have won this match!

http://s6.postimg.cc/v96gt1akx/Stoke_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/54p5jwvyp/Stoke_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Rijeka no problem for Saints

Five days later we had to defend our 3-0 lead in Rijeka. We kept Fonte on the bench, but Wanyama was back from his injury and that immediately made a difference when Wanyama sent the ball into the area for Pellè who scored the opening goal with a fine header!

This meant that the game was decided, really. So in the second half we brought on Fonte, Targett and Romeu.

Romeu showed his value for the team again, but Fonte was overzealous and tackled and knocked Radosevic to the ground. When he received a yellow card he reacted over-passionately and the referee did not hesitate but showed Fonte a second yellow card and sent him off!

http://s6.postimg.cc/xugmuapch/fonte.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Fonte was sent off after he received his second yellow card

Five minutes later Mané scored our second goal with the assist coming from Tadic, so at the end of the day it was still a solid win for us, but our team captain's red card remains a cause for worry.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4cmhkprrl/Rijeka.png (http://postimage.org/)

So finally, both Pellè and Mané scored again, but Ward-Prowse is not delivering and it looks like we may need to revert back to our old strategy, the two-striker formation that brought us so much success at the beginning of the season.

http://s6.postimg.cc/fwi4l9m1d/Rijeka_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/hi1zqtln5/Rijeka_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

At least our November fixtures seem reasonable enough. But then again, away games are not always all that predictable.

http://s6.postimg.cc/tg3k4ppe9/Fixtures.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
12-11-15, 11:08 AM
Good draw at Stoke, looks like you did well to come away with a point even though there was no Shaqiri or Arnautovic in the Stoke side :D

Good stuff in Europe too. I'm guessing Fonte is beginning to really test your patience so he'll be moved on ASAP :lol:

samsami
12-11-15, 11:10 AM
Good draw at Stoke, looks like you did well to come away with a point even though there was no Shaqiri or Arnautovic in the Stoke side :D

Good stuff in Europe too. I'm guessing Fonte is beginning to really test your patience so he'll be moved on ASAP :lol:

Our team captain???

Mark
12-11-15, 11:13 AM
You mentioned earlier that he hasn't been performing well enough and now he's got himself sent off late on in a match where the game was won and got two bookings in just 40 minutes. Poor discipline and leadership ;)

samsami
12-11-15, 11:20 AM
You mentioned earlier that he hasn't been performing well enough and now he's got himself sent off late on in a match where the game was won and got two bookings in just 40 minutes. Poor discipline and leadership ;)

OK, I have to admit he has tested my patience, just a bit :frusty:

Redknapp69
12-11-15, 10:16 PM
Rijeka no problem for SPURS?!

Fans are up in arms as Samsami seems to care more about his old club rather than the Saints :lol:

Redknapp69
12-11-15, 10:18 PM
Ward Prowse is surely not an AM so no suprise he's not performing there

What to do with Fonte - as I previously said you could do with some better DC backup - is Caulker any good at Saints in this update and worth a go? (UYoshida prob solid enough though)

Lucky draw at Stoke as well!

samsami
12-11-15, 10:28 PM
Rijeka no problem for SPURS?!

Fans are up in arms as Samsami seems to care more about his old club rather than the Saints :lol:

Whahahaha! Are you drunk? Where did you read that? :peace:


Ward Prowse is surely not an AM so no surprise he's not performing there

What to do with Fonte - as I previously said you could do with some better DC backup - is Caulker any good at Saints in this update and worth a go? (Yoshida prob solid enough though)

Lucky draw at Stoke as well!

For what it's worth, Ward-Prowse is Attacking Midfielder (Right/Centre)
And yes, we need more and better players!

Redknapp69
13-11-15, 02:51 AM
Bloody hell - is he really?! Suprised by that!

I see you have made the change

Too late though - the morning papers have noted it!

samsami
13-11-15, 08:45 AM
Bloody hell - is he really?! Suprised by that!

I see you have made the change

Too late though - the morning papers have noted it!

As to Ward-Prowse, here's what JayFlo said a few days ago:


On Ward Prowse he's a funny one. Constantly compared to Beckham for his set piece ability, which is very good, and leadership qualities, but he's not a winger, not an anchor, not a number 10 - he just is.

As to the morning papers, I'm in total denial :noidea:

samsami
13-11-15, 09:08 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints lack striking power

Against Newcastle we had Yoshida play as central defender again, keeping Fonte on the bench. Rodriguez was also playing again because Wanyama was in need of a break.

But again, we obviously lacked striking power even though we created as many scoring opportunities as Newcastle. However, they were far more effective than we were and while we failed to score it was Mitrovic who found the net for Newcastle with a low drive, just after half time.

http://s6.postimg.cc/a1bmdy6kx/pelle.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè frustrated by Newcastle goalkeeper

And while Pellè, Rodriguez and Ward-Prowse failed it was Sissoko who scored a second Newcastle goal in the 74th minute to decide the match. A most depressing result as everyone had expected us to win this match without too much difficulty.

So why are Ward-Prowse, Mané and Pellè not delivering? Perhaps we should change our formation?

http://s6.postimg.cc/hz1g1uuhd/New.png (http://postimage.org/)

Stekelenburg had another off-day, but Van Dijk was our best player to-day.

http://s6.postimg.cc/krunlvutt/New_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/7dhkpuo5t/New_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Fonte remains team captain

On a positive note, we had a good long talk with Fonte and he has apologised for his recent 'over-passionate' behaviour and promised to give 100% to the club while setting an example for the younger players as well.

Fonte is a loyal and commanding figure, passionate about the club, and we still believe he is the perfect choice to be Southampton’s captain.

Saints eliminate Millwall from the League Cup

Three days later we had to play Millwall in the League Cup Fourth Round. Wanyama played again and Fonte returned to his normal role as central defender and as team captain. Both of them played quite well, although Wanyama received a yellow card so Steven Davis replaced him in the second half.

Now Millwall may be a relatively weak opponent, but defeating them is still no formality and we were delighted to see Clasie play so well and to have Ward-Prowse finally deliver!

http://s6.postimg.cc/mtzqdvi6p/ward.png (http://postimage.org/)
Ward-Prowse scored both goals against Millwall!!

It started when Clasie drifted a corner in and Ward-Prowse blasted the ball towards the top corner and found the back of the net! And just before half-time Wanyama let fly with his right foot and Andrews beat the ball away but it fell to Ward-Prowse who found the net again, this time with a pot-shot from 15 yards!

But the game did not end on a happy note. Unfortunately Pellè was sent off this time, for shoving Abdou. The decision seemed a bit harsh, but Pellè should not have pushed Abdou. It's as simple as that.

So what could have been a good match to tank up on confidence ended with a sense of anti-climax and as it is, we still don't know where we are.

http://s6.postimg.cc/y18klzjkh/Mill.png (http://postimage.org/)

Ward-Prowse was important with his two goals, but Clasie was named Man of the Match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/dsglmiuvl/Mill_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/u656jf0ep/Mill_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent in the UEFA Cup will be Malmö FF. The rest of the month, until well into December our schedule looks fairly reasonable. But then again, who would have thought that Newcastle would defeat us at St.Mary's?

http://s6.postimg.cc/vmgp1k3bl/Fixtures.png (http://postimage.org/)

Pellè has been suspended for just one match.

Mark
13-11-15, 10:13 AM
Vote of confidence for Fonte :D

Seems a few players can't get into a good run of form but in fairness, you matched Newcastle in terms of statistics so just a bad day at the office?

samsami
13-11-15, 10:22 AM
Vote of confidence for Fonte :D

Seems a few players can't get into a good run of form but in fairness, you matched Newcastle in terms of statistics so just a bad day at the office?

I hope so. But I must say that Mitrovic has drawn my attention!

ebfatz
13-11-15, 04:45 PM
Newcastle were bound to win :)

Mitrovic over Mane any day. And thats a totally unbiased view.

He'll probably set you back a bit though.

Redknapp69
14-11-15, 03:46 AM
Your keeper just had a 'mare can Newcastle - don't get too down

Can you show current formation please? Pelle should work well as a lone front man?

samsami
14-11-15, 08:58 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints narrowly defeat Norwich

After the international break we had to play Norwich. An easy enough match, you would think. And because Pellè was banned we changed our formation to 4-1-3-2 and had Rodriguez and Mané play as our striker pair. After all, our fans are demanding goals and you can't blame them. Although, other fans are saying that they don't care how many goals we score, as long as we win our league matches against the 'weaker' teams. Perhaps they are more realistic?

Anyway, Fonte played one of his best games so far. He is doing again what he is supposed to do as central defender and setting a good example as well. But the lack of striking power was still very obvious. Having Rodriguez and Mané as striker duo instead of Pellè as the lone striker seemed to make no difference.

In fact, we were hardly better that the number 19 of the Premier League and if it had not been for Dusan Tadic the match would have ended in a horrible goalless draw. And frankly, we did not deserve more, either. But the 'miracle' happened in injury time when Tadic collected the ball and started coming forward, tracked by Bassong. Tadic then took the ball past Whittaker and past Howson and finally scored with a great strike! Kean could never have seen the ball!

http://s6.postimg.cc/3s3bnnq35/Tadic.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Tadic scored the deciding goal in the dying seconds!

Immediately after that goal the final whistle was blown and our fans could start celebrating! It made everyone forget, at least momentarily, what a poor performance we had just delivered.

http://s6.postimg.cc/7cc8a6bpt/Norwich.png (http://postimage.org/)

So why do we have some much difficulty defeating teams that reside near the bottom of the League? First Bournemouth (1-0) and now Norwich as well.

http://s6.postimg.cc/5j9bluqj5/Norw_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/c4qmzcvrl/Norw_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints win in Sweden

Four days later we had to play Malmö FF in Sweden, this time with Pellè and Rodriguez as our striker pair.

Fonte was banned for this match and once more we won a match while we barely were the better team. And it was Rodriguez this time who scored twice within two minutes! And they were two almost identical goals, too. Both times he collected the ball, moved into the area and scored with a lovely strike!

http://s6.postimg.cc/sze7nwt75/jay.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Rodriguez made his mark in Sweden

It's too early to tell, but we may just have found the right person to play alongside Pellè. On the other hand, we do seem to score more goals in European games, probably because we have mostly been playing weaker opponents.

http://s6.postimg.cc/alqngmztd/Mamlmo.png (http://postimage.org/)

Malmö FF should have been no match for us and a 2-0 away win is always good of course, but it wasn't all that easy, really.

http://s6.postimg.cc/46rmjyt3l/Malm_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/kkg7guymp/Malm_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

We obviously win our European games more easily than our Premier League games...

http://s6.postimg.cc/oi3h69lg1/Table13.png (http://postimage.org/)

samsami
14-11-15, 09:15 AM
Your keeper just had a 'mare can Newcastle - don't get too down
Can you show current formation please? Pelle should work well as a lone front man?

Against Newcastle (and earlier games) it was like this, with Rodriguez playing regularly as well, of course. It's the formation that worked so well with Feyenoord for a long time, until I started using a two striker formation with them as well.

http://s6.postimg.org/kadqumqc1/Newc.png (http://postimage.org/)

Of course these last two games I have reverted back to the system which we started out with at the beginning of the season and which worked so well with Spurs.

http://s6.postimg.org/gfacs2769/Later.png (http://postimage.org/)

Perhaps 18 goals in 13 League matches is not so bad for Southampton? Or perhaps Saints need an entirely different formation from that of Feyenoord and from that of Spurs?

Mark
14-11-15, 12:40 PM
With the players you have, I'd say the likes of Rodriguez and Mane are probably better used on the flanks with Pelle as the lone striker?

Either way, you're still not doing too badly. Getting results which is the main thing!

Good to see Fonte has wised up a bit now after you had words with him.

Redknapp69
14-11-15, 02:28 PM
I like the sound of Mark's suggestion and 2nd formation that you have now is better suited with the players you currently have

samsami
14-11-15, 05:07 PM
With the players you have, I'd say the likes of Rodriguez and Mane are probably better used on the flanks with Pelle as the lone striker?
Either way, you're still not doing too badly. Getting results which is the main thing!
Good to see Fonte has wised up a bit now after you had words with him.

Do you mean a 4-5-1 formation, Mark?


I like the sound of Mark's suggestion and 2nd formation that you have now is better suited with the players you currently have

What do you mean with 2nd formation? The two strikers 4-1-3-2 formation?

Redknapp69
14-11-15, 05:16 PM
Yep - 4132 better than what you had before

samsami
14-11-15, 10:11 PM
Yep - 4132 better than what you had before

I'll have to stick with it for a while now. Mark seems to think that Pelle should be the lone striker, though.

samsami
15-11-15, 09:44 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints plod on in Wales

The next weekend we had to play Swansea. We barely eliminated them from the League Cup a few weeks ago (0-1) but this time the result was without question very disappointing.

Ward-Prowse and Rodriguez were the only ones to produce shots on target, but Swansea could easily have won the match as well. In fact, they had the better chances, but this time Stekelenburg played very well.

Stalemate was certainly not the result we had been hoping for with Rodriguez and Pellè as our striker pair!

http://s6.postimg.cc/c1fnlg0r5/Swan.png (http://postimage.org/)

Unfortunately, if truth be told, a goalless draw is all that we deserved. We are obviously still struggling to get out of our dip.

http://s6.postimg.cc/59p8ilbrl/Swan_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/jvkukkxxt/Swan_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints struggle against Malmö FF as well

We played slightly better against Malmö, a few days later when we defended our 2-0 lead at St.Mary's. But once again, we had difficulty finding the net.

It started out well enough though, when Rodriguez moved the ball right for Pellè whose low shot skidded on the wet surface and the ball went in!

http://s6.postimg.cc/7nbrncfkh/1680542_heroa.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè scored the opening goal with the assist coming from Rodriguez

Everyone was now hoping that our strikers would continue to score goals, but instead it was Kroon who scored for Malmö and after that equaliser our lads seemed to lose heart. Nevertheless, Pellè could easily have scored another goal (or two!) if their goalkeeper had not been in top form.

We brought on three subs in the second half to avoid injuries in the wet and slippery conditions and at least we qualified for the next round without too much difficulty and without further injuries. But we do need a good win soon to boost our morale!

http://s6.postimg.cc/64gdid901/Malm.png (http://postimage.org/)

At least this time we created more scoring chances; and we played slightly better than we did in Wales.

http://s6.postimg.cc/6sp81b7pt/Malm_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/fdijshhw1/Malm_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Crystal Palace will be our next opponent, on Sunday, with the League Cup Quarter Final match against Watford on Wednesday. Both of those matches will be at St. Mary's. As a matter of fact, we have no less than five consecutive home games coming up now. And our fans are thirsty for goals and for good results!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ecib3d0wh/Table14.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
15-11-15, 01:18 PM
Been a while since we had a dominating performance in the league? Hopefully it's just a matter of time!

ebfatz
15-11-15, 06:02 PM
What's with taking off Clasie at half time against Swansea when he was on an 8.

Seems a weird decision.

18 goals in 14 league games is a bt of a worry as well. Strikers department need to step up.

samsami
15-11-15, 06:48 PM
What's with taking off Clasie at half time against Swansea when he was on an 8.

Seems a weird decision.

18 goals in 14 league games is a bt of a worry as well. Strikers department need to step up.

We would qualify after the 2-0 win in Sweden and Clasie needed a rest.
The striker department, as you call it, is not functioning well for some reason.

Redknapp69
15-11-15, 08:40 PM
Got lucky in South Wales............again! :)

Keeper MOM says it all :lol:

Job done again in Europe - no need to worry there until you get a tougher team

Are you prioritising League or the Cup game - you maybe able to play full strength in both though?

samsami
15-11-15, 09:48 PM
Got lucky in South Wales............again! :)

Keeper MOM says it all :lol:
Job done again in Europe - no need to worry there until you get a tougher team
Are you prioritising League or the Cup game - you maybe able to play full strength in both though?

You're from Wales, by any chance?

First season is just see how far we get and then buy the necessary new players for the second season!


18 goals in 14 league games is a bt of a worry as well. Strikers department need to step up.

Come to think of it, we scored five goals against Aston Villa, so not counting that match it's 13 goals in 13 league games!!

Topofthekop
15-11-15, 10:34 PM
Mane is definitely better suited to a more attacking wide role, or even possibly behind Pelle.. I bought him on a save for cardiff after 2 seasons and found him Immensely frustrating to manage. Stats are pretty good but his performances left something to be desired.

samsami
16-11-15, 09:19 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints lucky(?) against Crystal Palace

We played quite well against Crystal Palace. We created scoring chances and apart from Soares everyone played above expectation. In fact, Rodriguez and Pellè played extremely well together, for a change!

The problem was, whereas we failed to score, they did not. Just before half-time Jordon Mutch drove the ball in low to score his first ever goal for Crystal Palace!

In the second half we outplayed the Eagles, but although Rodriguez and Pellè attempted several shots on goal, they failed to find the net. But then, just as it began to look that we would lose this important match, Clasie laid the ball off and Ward-Prowse tried his luck and scored his fifth goal of the season with a fierce strike!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/l5wwo8csx/ward.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Ward-Prowse scored the late equaliser!

So with just seven minutes to go we drew level and we were much relieved that we did not lose the match, although there was a sense of disappointment as well. We still don't score the goals we need, even though we play better by the week.

http://s6.postimg.cc/79f11hkup/Pal.png (http://postimage.org/)

Based on both player ratings and match stats we should have easily won this game, but we simply don't score enough goals.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ok5ftici9/Pal_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/gih7bltqp/Pal_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

At least we stay ahead of the Eagles, but of course we would have much preferred to defeat them to-day!

http://s6.postimg.cc/tqgl4jr9t/Table15.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints through after bizarre League Cup clash with Watford

Three days later we had to play the number 18 of the Premier League in the League Cup Quarter Final. And it was one bizarre match!

Remarkably, with the exception of Bertrand our entire defence had an off-day, while our midfielders and strikers all played quite well again. It took Rodriguez just seven minutes to score the opening goal for us with a fierce shot and the crowd prepared themselves for an entertaining evening! Nor were they very much mistaken, but they were absolutely wrong if they expected an easy victory for Saints!

Just three minutes after Rodriguez' goal Fonte fouled Behrami by holding him back. Ibarbo lined up the free kick and struck it over the wall to score a fabulous equaliser! Of course that was a bit of a blow for our lads and it looked like this might be one of those matches again.

But then, in the 34th minute Wanyama was pushed over by Behrami who was shown a red card and was sent off! And so Watford had to finish the game with ten men, which resulted in many scoring opportunities for us. Rodriguez, Tadic, Mané, Wanyama, Ward-Prowse, Pellè and even Bertrand could all have scored at least once, but the crowd had to wait until the 82nd minute before Wanyama finally found the net.

Watford made a double substitution, but nobody gave them a chance any more, not with ten men. Until Jurado took the ball forward, showed Betrand a clean set of heels and blasted the ball towards the top corner and scored an incredible late equaliser!!

So the match went into extra time and in the 101st minute Capoue made a dangerous two-footed challenge on Yoshida and was also sent off! So now Watford had to finish the match with nine men! But still, however hard we tried, there were no goals and the match went to penalties!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ljy8ntwwh/Dusan_Tadic.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Tadic scored our third penalty

And finally, Watford succumbed to defeat as they missed their first three penalties! Ighalo put the first one over the bar and Stekelenburg managed to save Ibarbo's penalty. Holebas missed Watford's third penalty as well and after Wanyama had scored our fourth penalty we were finally through to the League Cup Semi Final.

http://s6.postimg.cc/vxpf67lxt/Watford.png (http://postimage.org/)

Nobody will ever be able to explain why this game ended in a 2-2 draw and not in an easy 4-0 or 5-0 victory for us.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ymk7w8rf5/Watford_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/l9h2tmmkx/Watford_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
16-11-15, 10:42 AM
Bloody hell :eek: The players are making hard work of it at the moment!

Need to get convincing wins over these sort of teams to put you in good stead against the big guns.

kuy
16-11-15, 02:57 PM
The performances seem to be there but the scores just aren't reflecting that - always frustrating when that happens! Looking forward to seeing what you do when the transfer window opens :ok:

samsami
16-11-15, 03:11 PM
The performances seem to be there but the scores just aren't reflecting that - always frustrating when that happens! Looking forward to seeing what you do when the transfer window opens :ok:

The formations (4-1-3-1-1 and 4-1-3-2) did not work all that well so the next formation will soon be 4-1-4-1 so that players like Mane and Tadic will play as wingers. Perhaps that will help!

Having said that, Southampton is not a top team. Their highest premier league finish is 7th. So a sixth place will already be a new record!

Saints are a bigger challenge for a coach than Feyenoord or Spurs! With Feyenoord and with Spurs I did the first season in a rush with far fewer posts. But with Saints I take it easy. Only when the League and the Cups get boring I will post more game results as a time.

Redknapp69
16-11-15, 07:22 PM
Take the posotoves in that you were unbeaten!

And you deserved to win both games!

Top half of the table is quite bunched up in the league

samsami
16-11-15, 07:33 PM
Take the positives in that you were unbeaten!
And you deserved to win both games!

Top half of the table is quite bunched up in the league

It is, so a few losses and we can find ourselves in ninth position.

samsami
17-11-15, 08:07 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints finally win again

After three consecutive draws at St.Mary's we finally won our fourth home match against Sunderland!

The first half was nothing but a mirror image of our most recent games, though. We were the better team, but we did not score and in fact, Sunderland came closer to finding the net than we did!

But early in the second half Bertrand started an impressive forward run and finally he put a low cross into the near post where Mané controlled the ball well and scored the opening goal!

http://s6.postimg.cc/4q289q7rl/mane.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Sadio Mané scored at just the right moment!

Now some of our more sceptical fans were not overly excited yet. They more or less counted on an equaliser by Sunderland. And indeed, Sunderland did immediately react by pushing forward in numbers and several times they came very close to equalising, but our defence was superb and Stekelenburg was absolutely brilliant! And to top it off, near the end of the match we actually scored a second goal when Clasie passed along the floor for Rodriguez to pick up the ball, take it into the box and score with a fine strike!

So after three consecutive drawn matches at St.Mary's we finally win again - and the crowd was more than delighted and celebrated together with the players and everyone on the bench!

http://s6.postimg.cc/hnpi5l1ap/Sund.png (http://postimage.org/)

A good, solid game by our lads! Soares and Stekelenburg were especially good to-day! We created fewer chances than Sunderland did, but we scored two goals for a change and that feels good!

http://s6.postimg.cc/hz6yichqp/Sund_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/y1e32h6tt/Sund_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

We are still in fourth place after this win. But more importantly, we are gradually beginning to play better and this time it finally paid off!

http://s6.postimg.cc/jf48bvzkh/Table16.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
17-11-15, 09:33 AM
Looks like the luck fell your side this time which is hasn't been doing so far this season
Great team performance
And Stekelenberg with a 'worldie' game!

samsami
17-11-15, 10:15 AM
Looks like the luck fell your side this time which is hasn't been doing so far this season
Great team performance
And Stekelenberg with a 'worldie' game!

Yep. And Stekelenburg would be great if he did not have so many off-days! But Forster will be back before too long now!

Mark
17-11-15, 10:23 AM
A good team performance and good to see Mane score.

Could still go 3rd with a game in hand but Chelsea still have two of their own!

kuy
17-11-15, 12:04 PM
Good to see you get the three points - was that with your new formation?

samsami
17-11-15, 05:04 PM
Good to see you get the three points - was that with your new formation?

No, not yet. It was the old formation and actually not so convincing, either. But the end result was all right :)

samsami
18-11-15, 08:10 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints impress against Spurs

A week after defeating Sunderland we had to play Spurs in our fifth home match in a row.

Now because we have scored so precious few goals these past few months, we decided to make a tactical change and start using wingers instead of our usual (narrow) formation with one or two strikers. However, Clasie will stay on as defensive central midfielder, which means that our new formation is 4-1-4-1 with Mané and Tadic as wingers.

Tottenham has been playing quite well lately, after a very very poor start of the season, but Kane was injured so N'Jie replaced him. When we played Spurs at White Hart Lane in the first League match of the season, the match had ended in stalemate. This time we wanted more!

And we played remarkably well! Especially Rodriguez, who seemed to enjoy playing as midfielder again. And when he received the ball from Pellè in the 22nd minute he drove it towards goal and scored! Lloris was rooted to the spot!

http://s6.postimg.cc/dz4ejugnl/rodriguez.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Rodriguez scored again, this time as midfielder...

A few minutes later Mané almost scored as well when he fired the ball in low and hard, but this time Lloris managed to push the ball away superbly.

We had a few more scoring chances but Tottenham also remained dangerous until the very end and finally they equalised when Dembélé got free in the penalty area after an excellent low cross by Walker.

Of course that was a bit of a disappointment, but it felt quite different from how we had felt after some of those recent draws. Tottenham is a very strong opponent and we played so well to-day that we have every right to feel proud of ourselves! What's more, we are beginning to believe that great things can and will happen in the (near) future!

http://s6.postimg.cc/obqp5xa6p/Spu.png (http://postimage.org/)

With a bit of luck we could have beaten a strong opponent like Tottenham this time and that goes give one hope!

http://s6.postimg.cc/guhhqpknl/Spu_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/6a7k84g5t/Spu_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our sixth and final consecutive home match will be against Manchester City. Now there's a challenge for us! And it does not stop there, either. Following that match it will be Liverpool at Anfield Road...

Redknapp69
18-11-15, 09:16 AM
It sounds like a better formation to me and you could have won that on a different day (Lloris again brilliant)

Redknapp69
18-11-15, 09:17 AM
Tough games coming up especially at fortress Anfield :)

samsami
18-11-15, 12:40 PM
It sounds like a better formation to me and you could have won that on a different day (Lloris again brilliant)

Yes, I would try to buy him if I could but we have Forster back from injury soon!

Mark
18-11-15, 01:15 PM
6 home games in a row, wtf! :eek:

A much improved effort, here's hoping it's the start of good things with the new formation.

samsami
18-11-15, 02:17 PM
6 home games in a row, wtf! :eek:

A much improved effort, here's hoping it's the start of good things with the new formation.

Let's see if the wingers will be more effective now! Probably I will use this formation at least until the end of this season.

http://s6.postimg.org/5oeghncnl/Capture.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://formation-x.com/en/formation/southampton.html

samsami
19-11-15, 08:34 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Southampton 0-0 Manchester City:
Premier League leaders held to a goalless draw

For the second time we used the 4-1-4-1 formation and this time we held the Premier League leaders to stalemate! After already having lost to Chelsea and to Man Utd this was the first time we played one of the big guns without losing the match!

In fact, we could have scored an early opening goal when Mané swung in a far post cross from the left and Pellè got up to head at goal, but Hart did well to turn the ball away.

Both teams seemed very careful and afraid to make mistakes, but as the match dragged on Man City became stronger. And early in the second half they almost scored when Agüero played the ball past Fonte and tried a low right-footed drive, but Stekelenburg got his fingertips to the ball!

http://s6.postimg.cc/it6j7o6oh/92882.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Stekelenburg kept a clean sheet against the Premier League leaders

So we survived, although in the 88th minute things still almost went wrong for us when Bertrand could not stop Kevin De Bruyne going past him. De Bruyne struck the ball with fury, but once again it was Stekelenburg who managed to turn the ball away!

So we held the Premier League leaders to a draw - but our fans celebrated as if we had just won both match and the title!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/m7axikxxt/City.png (http://postimage.org/)

Even though Man City played slighty better than us, based on the match stats you could say that we actually deserved this draw!

http://s6.postimg.cc/xkxgts8gh/City_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/t0baeuor5/City_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So these six home games in a row resulted in five draws (one of which we won by penalty shoot-out) and just one regular win. But on the other hand, we did not lose any of them! And we have grown as a team and feel better about the future now than we did before we started this series of matches.

http://s6.postimg.cc/6cmuh7ufl/Table18.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent will be Liverpool. Now we may not win at Anfield, but neither will we let them humiliate us!

Mark
19-11-15, 09:54 AM
Good stuff, hopefully you're more solid at the back now so that's a great result.

samsami
19-11-15, 04:03 PM
Good stuff, hopefully you're more solid at the back now so that's a great result.

Above all, we need goals. So far we have scored 1 goal per league match (not counting a 5-0 win against Aston Villa).

Redknapp69
19-11-15, 11:40 PM
Mean defence you have and very good result there - Stekelenberg doing very well.
Is Forster out for season?

Hope you get tonked in the next game :)

samsami
20-11-15, 08:26 AM
Mean defence you have and very good result there - Stekelenberg doing very well.
Is Forster out for season?

Hope you get tonked in the next game :)

Forster will be back in February or so!

samsami
20-11-15, 08:42 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints lose at Anfield

We lost our final game of 2015 at Anfield, with the deciding goal scored by none other than Adam Lallana! We can live with the result, but it would have been so much nicer if someone else had scored that goal...

And it started out so well. The first chance was for Wanyama. After just four minutes he got free in the penalty area and tried a volley but Mignolet managed to parry it. And two minutes later Sakho slid through Wanyama who looked to go past him so we were awarded a free kick. Van Dijk flighted in the free kick but again Mignolet pushed it away!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ruq4ieaxd/download.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Wanyama came very close to scoring against Liverpool

And ten minutes later Bertrand hit the ball ahead of Pellè in the area. Pellè found himself with plenty of time and fired the ball in low and hard, but for the third time we were frustrated by Mignolet who succeeded in turning the ball away!

After that Liverpool took control of the match and they were the better team. And yet, they created very few real scoring chances. Until deep into the second half when Stekelenburg made a horrible mistake when he tried to punch the ball clear and the loose ball was picked up by Lallana who had little trouble finding the net!

With Wanyama playing brilliantly we did what we could, but we failed to create real scoring chances in the remaining time and when the final whistle blew we knew that we had been defeated - but not humiliated!

http://s6.postimg.cc/mijnn8gk1/Liv.png (http://postimage.org/)

Based on player ratings Liverpool deserved to win this match, of course. Based on match stats, however, you could actually say that a draw would have been a reasonable result to-day.

http://s6.postimg.cc/nwbaijftd/Liv_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/m8c53w1xt/Liv_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints eliminate Bournemouth from the FA Cup

Four days later, on 2nd January 2016, we showed that we have really grown as a team by defeating Bournemouth in the FA Cup 3rd Round.

We were the better team, but Bournemouth took the lead in the 18th minute when Tomlin scored with a lovely strike. And a number of weeks ago that would have been enough to demoralise us. But our team has grown stronger and we have gained confidence and our lads refused to let that early goal discourage them!

It was Wanyama who took the lads by the hand and just thirteen minutes after Tomlin's goal Rodriguez struck a free kick and the wall deflected the shot, but the ball fell to Wanyama who had a go on goal and scored the equaliser!

http://s6.postimg.cc/4rzlj89g1/vik.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Wanyama scored twice against Bournemouth

And in the second half Wanyama showed his value for the club again. Soares got a cross in from the right to the near post and Wanyama got up to head at goal and found the net for the second time!

It was really good to see how we found the strength to bounce back and win this match after having lost at Anfield just four days earlier and after that early goal by Bournemouth to-day!

http://s6.postimg.cc/gf233bqa9/Bourn.png (http://postimage.org/)

Obviously we deserved this win! Wanyama was named Man of the Match, but Van Dijk and Stekelenburg were also very important again.

http://s6.postimg.cc/75zwt7he9/Bourn_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/bk8e51ryp/Bourn_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So we seem to be back on track, even though we lost at Anfield. We have performed well against Spurs (1-1), City (0-0) and Liverpool (0-1) and we had less difficulty defeating Bournemouth to-day than we did earlier in this season!

http://s6.postimg.cc/bdytwbr9t/Table19.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent is Leicester City, so hopefully we can prove in that match in front of our home crowd that we have made substantial progress! And we shall have to win that match, because after that it will be Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium!

Mark
20-11-15, 11:01 AM
Looks like a draw would have been fair against Liverpool, shame Stekelenburg had a stinker.

Good comeback against Bournemouth and nice to see Wanyama back among the goals.

samsami
20-11-15, 11:09 AM
Looks like a draw would have been fair against Liverpool, shame Stekelenburg had a stinker.

Good comeback against Bournemouth and nice to see Wanyama back among the goals.

Yes. Can't wait until Forster gets back. Stekelenburg can be brilliant but he has too many off-days.

Oh well, at least his latest blunder should make Redders happy :)

Redknapp69
20-11-15, 02:25 PM
Great win for pool and ex saints players MOM and goal scorer!

Good progress in cup :ok;

What's Stekelenberg average rating? Seems like he done well for me and Forster should not auto cone back in?

Amazed by goals Wanyama getting!

That 4th CL spot is well up for grabs!

samsami
20-11-15, 02:32 PM
Great win for pool and ex saints players MOM and goal scorer!
Good progress in cup :ok;
What's Stekelenberg average rating? Seems like he done well for me and Forster should not auto come back in?


Stekelenburg's rating is quite high (7.33) but he has had more off-days than a goalkeeper should have.

ps) You have any idea how often I had to use CTRL-ALT-DEL before Liverpool finally won the game - just to humour you ;)

samsami
21-11-15, 09:37 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat Leicester at St.Mary's

For our next match Clasie was banned so Wanyama played as defensive central midfielder and Ward-Prowse finally had a chance to play again, as central midfielder.

Leicester started the match with a very defensive outlook so with the support of the crowd we tried to score an early goal, but we weren't very lucky.

Rodriguez struck the ball on the half-volley, but it went just over the bar! After a corner taken by Ward-Prowse, Pellè powered a header at goal, but Schmeichel managed to turn it behind. Ward-Prowse swung the next corner into the box, but Schmeichel used his fists to clear the ball before Wanyama could get his head to it.

It took a full hour before Pellè finally found the net! Soares squared the ball from the right and Pellè struck it with fury and scored the important opening goal! That goal have us wings and a little later, when Ward-Prowse swung yet another corner into the box Pellè out-jumped Huth and headed the ball down for Tadic who scored with a perfect half-volley!
http://s6.postimg.cc/uht2ff1zl/Dusan_Tadic.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Tadic and Pellè were important against Leicester City

Unfortunately Bertrand had to leave the field injured in the dying seconds of the match. He will be out for a couple of weeks with a stubbed toe.

But the crowd was more than delighted! After two draws and the lost match at Anfield, we finally had three points in the bag again! We had played so well against the big guns and hopefully with our new 4-1-4-1 formation we can defeat the weaker teams more easily now!

http://s6.postimg.cc/iweatyr4h/Lei.png (http://postimage.org/)

A very solid game! Pellè was named Man of the Match, but actually our whole team played quite well. We did not even create all that many scoring chances, but it was very important that both Pellè and Tadic have found the net again.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4oom5befl/Lei_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/bx08ulr69/Leic_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So now it will Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium! Arsenal are not at all doing well this season, but that does not mean all that much. We realise well enough that we shall have to be in top form to beat them, or even to draw the match, for that matter.

http://s6.postimg.cc/fu4oho3ip/Table20.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
21-11-15, 01:18 PM
Good to see a solid win again. Here's hoping you can get back into the top 4.

samsami
21-11-15, 02:47 PM
Good to see a solid win again. Here's hoping you can get back into the top 4.

After Arsenal it's number 4 (West Ham) - both of them away games!

Redknapp69
22-11-15, 12:47 AM
Big chance to start putting yourself in CL positions - or will be amongst the pack otherwise which is probably expected for Saints

samsami
22-11-15, 09:04 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Sensational Saints stun Gunners

With Wanyama as defensive central midfielder for Clasie, who was banned for this match as well, and with Ward-Prowse as central midfielder and Target for the injured Ryan Bertrand we had to play Arsenal who had lost their last match to Everton (0-2) and have not had a good start of the season.

But nobody had expected us to outclass the Gunners the way we did!

It started with Ward-Prowse firing in a freekick. Ospina saved and deflected the ball clear, but Targett was the first to the rebound. Gabriel Paulista made a good sliding challenge on Targett, but only for Mané to gather up the loose ball and score his fifth goal of the season!!

Now an early goal can often cause a team to wonder what to do next, but this time Pellè made an end to all uncertainty when he scored with a fierce strike just minutes after Mané's opening goal!

http://s6.postimg.cc/u2me055g1/Graziano_pelle_3127240c.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè scores Saints' second goal with a fierce strike

And it did not stop there! The Gunners seemed stunned and in the 35th minute Pellè picked up the ball and looked to bury it in the top corner. Ospina beat the ball away but Pellè went for the follow-up and found the net for the second time!!

In the second half Arsenal seemed to have recovered a bit, but they obviously never believed in a good result anymore. Not even after Alex Chamberlain had scored a late goal for the Gunners. Sure enough, they pressed forward, but we countered well and it was Soares who scored our fourth goal! A goal which many Arsenal fans never saw as they had already left the Emirates Stadium, disgusted with their club's performance.

http://s6.postimg.cc/42zn97jdd/Ars.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our team played fantastically! Only Van Dijk seemed to be struggling a bit. And for the second time in a row Pellè was named Man of the Match. He really seems to be thriving at the moment!

http://s6.postimg.cc/6f7n6svyp/Ars_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/66a2gvj69/Ars_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

There is little doubt now that the 4-1-4-1 formation, with Mané and Tadic as wingers and Pellè as the lone striker, is the right formation at the moment. Even most sceptics would agree! But then again, the next match could already change that.

Mark
22-11-15, 11:50 AM
:faint:

Great result! Looks like the players have definitely settled into the new tactic :ok:

Redknapp69
22-11-15, 01:49 PM
Pelle is loving the tactic

Best win yet for you

samsami
23-11-15, 08:52 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints must face up to reality

Bertrand was still injured and Fonte was banned for this match so Targett and Yoshida played against West Ham. But we have just humiliated Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium so why would we be afraid of The Hammers?

But there is a reason why West Ham is currently in fourth place. They are at the top of their form and they outplayed us in the opening minutes! It was a good thing that Stekelenburg played so well and prevented Sakho twice from scoring with a header. But with his third attempt, this time with a low shot, Sakho finally found the back of the net! There was nothing Stekelenburg could do about it. And barely five minutes later Cresswell also scored, but fortunately for us it was ruled out by the linesman's flag because Obiang was offside.

We were obviously in a fierce battle for fourth place and at half-time we had not produced a single shot on goal yet, so in the second half we tried to change things around and initially that seemed to work. After just three minutes Pellè fired a header at goal, but it went just over the bar. Two minutes later Pellè found Tadic in the area and Tadic hit the ball high and hard towards the goal, but he also put it just over.

We needed a goal so we brought on Ward-Prowse but it only resulted in Sakho scoring his second goal for West Ham, this time with a simple finish after Stekelenburg had deflected the ball clear and the rebound fell to Sakho.

We replaced Mané by Davis and that finally seemed to help. In the 81st minute Davis sent the ball near the post from the right and Pellè headed it down for Wanyama who scored with a great strike! This goal gave us a lifeline but there was not enough time for us to score a second goal and in the end we simply had to face reality and admit that West Ham had won the battle for fourth place.

http://s6.postimg.cc/h6dnbg34h/Ham.png (http://postimage.org/)

When it comes to match stats and player ratings West Ham deserved to win to-day.

http://s6.postimg.cc/enryarhe9/Ham_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/z2t0zkpu9/Ham_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints advance in FA Cup

A week later we had to play Bolton in the FA Cup 4th Round. A good opportunity to tank up on confidence.

Tadic scored an early goal with a great left-footed half volley and we obviously outclassed Bolton, but we failed to score a second goal and sure enough, in the 72th minute Dobbie managed to equalise for Bolton!

We really wanted to avoid a replay and it seemed that our lads realised something had to happen. They pulled themselves together and Pellè and Davis scored to give us a reasonable result.

http://s6.postimg.cc/mj2hpkr0x/Bol.png (http://postimage.org/)

We outclassed the number 21 of the First Division, but we should have decided the match much earlier.

http://s6.postimg.cc/r14sho72p/Bol_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/5xuv9wzwx/Bol_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

We have a very busy schedule with League matches plus games to be played both in the League Cup and in the FA Cup! One good thing is that Forster should be back in about two weeks, but of course he lacks match practice.

http://s6.postimg.cc/6onlfp2a9/Table22.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/whngc20gh/Schedule.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
23-11-15, 10:23 AM
Tough away game v hammers but still good chance to catch them - especially with 4 'easy' games coming up
Good cup progress again - who is next opponent?

Mark
23-11-15, 11:48 AM
Damn, big opportunity missed against West Ham. Must have just been an 'off' day :(

samsami
23-11-15, 11:53 AM
Tough away game v hammers but still good chance to catch them - especially with 4 'easy' games coming up
Good cup progress again - who is next opponent?

Spurs :)

samsami
24-11-15, 07:28 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints win 1st Leg League Cup Semi-Final

With everyone fit and available (and with Ward-Prowse for Rodriguez, who is not at the top of his form) we had little difficulty with Aston Villa, although the result was less spectacular than in the league match at the beginning of the season when we defeated them 5-0.

Wanyama, who had scored a hat-trick in that earlier match, found the net after just ten minutes. Clasie lifted the ball towards him in the area and Wanyama scored with a fine header! Three minutes later Mané also scored a goal, but it was ruled out because Bertrand had strayed fractionally offside.

We remained the better team and deserved a penalty when Bunn clipped Mané's feet in the area, but the referee turned down the penalty appeal. We did not complain, but about a minute later Mané put the ball into the six yard box and Wanyama scored his second goal with a header!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/u88iss6a9/wanyama.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Wanyama scored five goals in two matches against Aston Villa!

Just before half time N'Zogbia almost scored for Villa with a long shot, but the ball clipped the bar and went over.

In the second half we were again the better team, but we created hardly any real scoring opportunities and even though we brought on three subs, that did not make any difference.

Still, a 2-0 win should be enough to qualify for the League Cup Final.

http://s6.postimg.cc/lw86dsjip/Villa.png (http://postimage.org/)

We were the better team, but we created too few scoring chances.

http://s6.postimg.cc/93k2dv7wx/Villa_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/jvm86pcr5/Villa_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints defeat Watford

Because Mané is now on international duty, Steven Davis replaced him against Watford and once more we scored an early opening goal. This time it was Bertrand who found the net when the rebound fell to him after Arlauskis parried a header by Pellè.

http://s6.postimg.cc/g0iu44tld/ryan_bertrand.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Bertrand scored the opening goal against Watford...

But it was not going to be a very easy game. Ibarbo scored the equaliser and Ward-Prowse had to go off injured. So we had to bring on Davis again, which is good because he wants to leave the club, probably because he did not get enough game time. We have already refused a bid by Newcastle and that annoyed Davis, so it's good if he gets some game time! And with Ward-Powse's injury we need him! But anyway, there were no more goals in the first half.

It was Wanyama (again!) who decided the match with a fine header after Soares had crossed the ball to the near post from the right. Pellè and Tadic should also have scored at least once each, however they failed to find the net.

http://s6.postimg.cc/xisaex6tt/Watf.png (http://postimage.org/)

The score may not really indicate it, but it was a well-deserved win. Soares was named Man of the Match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ncjovxmfl/Watf_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/ra6ylc98x/Watf_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent will be Aston Villa (again!) and then West Brom and Bournemouth.

The transfer window is now closed. We did not buy any new players this season - except Stekelenburg.

http://s6.postimg.cc/xhicli501/Transfers.png (http://postimage.org/)

Unfortunately Ward-Prowse will be out for about two months with a torn groin muscle. This obviously means that Rodriguez and/or Davies will indeed get a lot more game time now.

Redknapp69
24-11-15, 10:38 AM
Big injury blow there

A nice draw of Villa in SF and although you had a stroke of luck with thier keeper having an awful game i'd expect you to get to final anyway - real chance of a trophy!

Wanyama amazing goal scoring form continues in a deserved win!

Mark
24-11-15, 11:43 AM
Two good results there, shame Ward-Prowse is injured when you need him most. Hopefully a chance for Davis to prove himself and settle down again.

I think McQueen has decent potential, shame you sold him.

samsami
24-11-15, 12:39 PM
Two good results there, shame Ward-Prowse is injured when you need him most. Hopefully a chance for Davis to prove himself and settle down again.

I think McQueen has decent potential, shame you sold him.

Hm, I checked and Stoke value him at £1.8M now. So you may be right!

ebfatz
24-11-15, 06:55 PM
Very interesting smashing Arsenal one game and then losing to West Ham the next.
Need to cut those off days out.
Especially with a potential cup final on the horizon.

samsami
24-11-15, 08:24 PM
Very interesting smashing Arsenal one game and then losing to West Ham the next.
Need to cut those off days out.
Especially with a potential cup final on the horizon.

Yes, that would be nice. But at this stage I'm afraid that smashing Arsenal is the exception, more so than losing to West Ham away from home!

But you're right about the League Cup Final. So far we have only eliminated 'weak' teams: Swansea (1-0), Milwall (2-0), Watford (2-2 and penalties) and hopefully Villa next. The other semi-final is Arsenal vs Man Utd so we may meet Arsenal in the final! The first leg, at Old Trafford, ended in a 1-1 draw!

kuy
24-11-15, 08:24 PM
Good result against Villa, especially not conceding any away goals :ok:

samsami
25-11-15, 08:20 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat Villa for the third time: Pellè scores hat-trick

With Ward-Prowse injured and Mané still on international duty we needed both Rodriguez and Davies for this match. As backup we have Reed who is developing into a very promising midfielder.

Forster is back from his injury, but because he is lacking match practice he will play with the reserves first.

Now the slippery conditions at Villa Park made it hard to play well although it seemed that Aston Villa were used to it well before we were. At least they came out with an attacking formation and Gestede scored within five minutes, but much to our relief it was ruled out because Sánchez was in an offside position.

That should have been a warning signal for us, that it was not going to be as easy as in our earlier clashes at St.Mary's (5-0 and 2-0) and sure enough, about half an hour later Sánchez found the net!

In the second half we put a lot more pressure on them and when Soares picked up the ball and crossed into the box it was Pellè who out-jumped the goalkeeper and scored the equaliser!

We brought on Reed for Rodriguez, who had not been delivering, and the very next minute already Bertrand hit the ball ahead of Pellè in the area and on the volley Pellè shot and scored with a lovely strike! So that was two goals in just three minutes!

And seven minutes later Pellè almost scored again with a fierce shot, but this time he sent the ball just wide of the goal. However, then Clasie centred the ball from the left and for the second time Pellè out-jumped Bunn and with a fine header he scored the goal that sealed his hat-trick!

http://s6.postimg.cc/6is9vkmoh/pelle.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Obviously, Pellè was overjoyed. He has now scored 11 goals in 23 league matches. Wanyama, who has scored considerably more goals overall, has found the net just 8 times in 20 league matches.

http://s6.postimg.cc/s7hz7ya4x/Villa.png (http://postimage.org/)

At the end of the day this was a good match and a well-deserved win after our slow start and considering the weather circumstances.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ty109fro1/Villa_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/3utmtqevl/Villa_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So we are now back in fourth position again with what looks like an easy schedule, at least for the month of February.

http://s6.postimg.cc/58l9p1e4x/Table24.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.c/4dyq306a9/Schedule.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
25-11-15, 09:12 AM
Pelle is thriving in this new formation!

Who is his backup if he's injured etc?

Rodriguez?

Do you have Shane Long at the club?

samsami
25-11-15, 10:41 AM
Pelle is thriving in this new formation!
Who is his backup if he's injured etc?
Rodriguez?
Do you have Shane Long at the club?

Yes, we have Juanmi and Long. Rodriguez as lone striker might be an option, too.
And who knows, Wanyama might score even more goals in that position :)

Mark
25-11-15, 10:50 AM
Shame Rodriguez doesn't seem to be performing, he's a decent player. Hope he gets some form back.

Hopefully you can catch up with Man City if you get some good wins together in this run coming up.

samsami
25-11-15, 11:57 AM
Shame Rodriguez doesn't seem to be performing, he's a decent player. Hope he gets some form back.

Hopefully you can catch up with Man City if you get some good wins together in this run coming up.

Catch up with City? To tell you the truth, fourth place would be a miracle. But you are known to have been right before, so we'll see.

Beardo
25-11-15, 01:59 PM
Good stuff so far, what is happening with Arsenal ?

Have they sold lots of players ?

samsami
25-11-15, 02:05 PM
Good stuff so far, what is happening with Arsenal ?

Have they sold lots of players ?

Thanks. As to Arsenal, perhaps it's similar to what's happening to Chelsea IRL now?

http://s6.postimg.org/osnwfmitt/Gunners.png (http://postimage.org/)

They have not bought any new players.

ebfatz
25-11-15, 04:53 PM
Interesting to see Newcastle in a decent position.
They never seem to do well in CM.

Form, and Pelle's in particular is good at the moment.

The next three league games should all be winnable. The cup games will be more difficult with fitness a factor.
Four out of 5 games at home though could swing it all in your favour.

samsami
26-11-15, 08:52 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints underestimate West Brom

With Ward-Prowse injured and Mané still on international duty we needed both Rodriguez and Davies against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday 6th February and against Bournemouth on Wednesday 10th February.

Both teams reside near the bottom of the Premier League and most fans were already counting on 6 points added to our total in five days. And we certainly need those kind of results before we shall have to play the big guns again!

West Brom seemed duly impressed and they started very cautiously and even though it took a while, by half-time we were leading 1-0 after Pellè had blasted the ball towards the top corner and Foster managed to push it away only for Wanyama to score on the rebound!

http://s6.postimg.cc/vi5dhjpox/AMA298665.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Wanyama scored just before half-time

Even though we had some difficulty finding the net and Pellè was not at the top of his form this time, we seemed to have little cause to worry so we brought on three subs to give some of our players the rest they needed. However, in retrospect this may have been a mistake because in the 83rd minute Brunt found Anichebe who scored the late equaliser with a ferocious low drive!

Of course we desperately tried to get another goal in the remaining seven minutes but Rodriguez' shot was well held by Foster and when Pellè hit a speculative effort from 30 yards he sent the ball just inches wide of the goal.

http://s6.postimg.cc/t7sjfnr2p/Brom.png (http://postimage.org/)

We actually played quite well, but we foolishly underestimated West Brom and their late equaliser cost us two precious points.

http://s6.postimg.cc/5samab7bl/Brom_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/838oehi35/Brom_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Meanwhile Forster played with the reserves and his lack of match practice clearly showed. He is fit enough, but it will take some weeks before he will play in our first team again. It's a good thing we have Stekelenburg!

http://s6.postimg.cc/mxd0gnpw1/Forster.png (http://postimage.org/)


History (almost) repeats itself...

Five days later we played Bournemouth, the club which has been residing at the very bottom of the league this whole season.

In addition to Ward-Prowse and Mané, Bertrand was unavailable as well because he had gotten injured during training. So Targett played as our left defender and Rodriguez and Davies as our midfielders again.

Bournemouth started the match with a very defensive outlook and in the very first minute Davis got past Distin and passed ahead of Pellè in the area; Pellè lost his man and when he suddenly found himself with plenty of room he struck the ball with fury and found the back of the net!!

But perhaps that early goal was more a curse then a blessing for us, because once again our lads seemed to think that the three points were already in the bag. They actually played well enough and they impressed both the crowd and our opponents, but they failed to create good scoring chances.

In the second half we brought on Reed for Rodriguez and Reed played well enough, but still we did not score that much-needed second goal. So then the inevitable happened again. After a poor goal kick by Stekelenburg it was Quigley who collected the ball and tried a long shot and scored the equaliser for Bournemouth!

http://s6.postimg.cc/7qqgzsekx/Bournemouth.png (http://postimage.org/)
It's easy to forget that in the Premier League anyone can beat anyone...

We had to do something and we had to do it fast! So we brought on Shane Long - on a hunch we chose Long rather than Juanmi - to replace Pellè as well as Romeu to replace the tired Jordy Clasie. And this time we had a slice of luck! Davis swivelled on the ball and passed it into the area looking for the run of Long. Long picked up on the ball and bore down on goal and struck the ball past Myhill!

The crowd was ecstatic, of course, and these three points were desperately needed, but this match - like the previous one - is a good lesson for us, that if we are not 100% focussed, we can get problems against literally everybody!

http://s6.postimg.cc/c3kf4gxxt/Bourn.png (http://postimage.org/)

Again, we played very well. In fact, Steven Davis was magnificent to-day! And in many ways it was a great team performance. We just thought we could afford to take it easy after our early goal and so we failed to score more goals.

http://s6.postimg.cc/jkp15xy35/Bourn_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/fhy06v3yp/Bourn_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

We have some tough league matches to play yet before this season is over, but we are slowly beginning to believe that the important fourth place (which nobody dared to dream of at the beginning of the season) is now actually within reach! A lot will depend, though, on whether or not we have learned our important lesson this week!

http://s6.postimg.cc/bo4jxpmmp/Table26.png (http://postimage.org/)

But first we will be playing Tottenham in the FA Cup now!

Mark
26-11-15, 09:56 AM
Football is always a funny game, play well but draw against West Brom, don't play as well but beat Bournemouth!

samsami
26-11-15, 04:01 PM
Football is always a funny game, play well but draw against West Brom, don't play as well but beat Bournemouth!

Like beating Arsenal 4-1 and losing to West Ham next. Keeps it interesting!

Redknapp69
27-11-15, 12:31 AM
I actually thought you played very well wvs Bournemouth looking at the ratings

4 point gap over 5th

West Ham and Palace both lost 1 of thier games in that round

I reckon they'll continue to fall away - hopefully the mighty Liverpool and Swans can charge up the table :)

Interesting how Forster plays in any more reserve games - not the best 1st game back :lol:

samsami
27-11-15, 09:13 AM
I actually thought you played very well vs Bournemouth looking at the ratings

4 point gap over 5th
West Ham and Palace both lost 1 of their games in that round
I reckon they'll continue to fall away - hopefully the mighty Liverpool and Swans can charge up the table :)

Interesting how Forster plays in any more reserve games - not the best 1st game back :lol:

1) You're right, we played well if (just not in the box)
2) Yep, it's your Liverpool that I am keeping an eye on and not West Ham
3) Forster indeed seems to need time and we'll keep an eye on him! I suppose that's normal after such a long absence?

samsami
27-11-15, 09:22 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints eliminated from FA Cup by Spurs

We had to play Spurs for the third time this season. Our earlier clashes both ended in a draw (0-0 in London and 1-1 at St.Mary's) and this time we had to face them without Bertrand, Mané or Ward-Prowse. Now that should not really be a problem. Targett and Davies have both done exceptionally well as subs and Rodriguez is just as good as Ward-Prowse, if not better. At least, in theory.

And things started off well. With the support of the home crowd we took control of the match early on and after half an hour that paid off. Clasie took a corner and Pellè climbed above Fazio, headed the ball towards goal and found the net!!

But Tottenham was not defeated yet. And just before half-time Kane succeeded in going past Van Dijk and scored with a fine strike! Stekelenburg did not even move! Of course this was a bit of a blow for our lads, but things went from bad to worse when Davis pushed over Alderweireld and received the red card!!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/hgn1ntpzl/davis.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Davis was sent off and is now banned for one English match...

There was little we could do in the second half but hope for the best and it must be said, our lads fought like lions. It resulted in an avalanche of yellow cards but we could not prevent Kane from scoring again when he picked up the loose ball and struck it with fury and found the net for the second time to-day!

We still did not give up and Pellè had a chance or two but the better scoring chances were for Spurs and in the end we had to accept the simple fact that we had been eliminated from the FA Cup by Tottenham in front of our home crowd.

http://s6.postimg.cc/91p1grvf5/Tot.png (http://postimage.org/)

It was the red card that did us in. And the five yellow cards did not help, either... But the good news is that Targett is playing so well that he deserves to play more regularly now.

http://s6.postimg.cc/vews3kwcx/Tot_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/5bu01m8y9/Tot_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So next it's Aston Villa in the League Cup Semi-Final and after that things will start heating up quickly! That fourth place is important but if we should lose to Man Utd, Chelsea and Arsenal we could be in trouble soon.

http://s6.postimg.cc/4wiq8ln0x/Schedule.png (http://postimage.org/)

Mark
27-11-15, 10:55 AM
Silly Davis!

samsami
27-11-15, 11:06 AM
Silly Davis!

This is Davis would wants to leave the club, because he does not get to play enough.
This is Davis who gets a lot of game time now and has been offered a new contract because Ward-Prowse is injured.
This is Davis who was Man-of-the-Match against Bournemouth.

What was he thinking???

ebfatz
27-11-15, 08:28 PM
Ha ha!
Davis has cost you there.

Lots of big games to come in the next couple of months.
Couple of make or break ones in March/April.

samsami
27-11-15, 09:11 PM
Ha ha!
Davis has cost you there.

Lots of big games to come in the next couple of months.
Couple of make or break ones in March/April.

Actually, yes. And in May as well. Lots and lots of big guns ready to fire at us.
That fourth place is not as safe as it looks. On the contrary. It's probably asking too much of Saints.

Redknapp69
28-11-15, 02:47 AM
How many games he banned for?

Certainly a frustrating game that

Would the manager like to have a cup run or to concentrate on league tho?

samsami
28-11-15, 09:34 AM
How many games he banned for?
Certainly a frustrating game that
Would the manager like to have a cup run or to concentrate on league tho?

Just one game. And the League (4th place) is what we're after!!

samsami
28-11-15, 09:43 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints to League Cup Final!

Just four days after losing 2-1 to Tottenham Hotspur in the FA Cup, we lost 2-1 to Aston Villa in the League Cup as well. But this time it was actually a reason to celebrate!

Mané was back from his international duty, but Davies and Van Dijk were both banned for this match and Bertrand and Ward-Prowse are still injured. Of course we have Targett, Yoshida and Rodriguez so we were not overly concerned, especially since we had already won the first leg without conceding any goals (2-0).

But Villa started out with an attacking formation and it was a good thing that Stekelenburg was in top form! First Westwood almost scored when he drove the ball in low, but Stekelenburg parried it. Then Veretout almost scored with a fierce shot, but again Stekelenburg managed to turn the ball away. And finally Grealish hit the ball in low, but for the third time Stekelenburg saved well and held the ball. All of that happened in the first eleven minutes.

Finally, in the 35th minute Agbonlahor tried a long shot and Stekelenburg did well to get his fingertips to the ball but Veretout was left with a simple finish and he scored for Villa!

Perhaps our fans thought that Pellè would score another hattrick in the second half, like he had done two weeks ago at Villa Park when we were also 1-0 down at half-time. But if they did they were very much mistaken. In fact, Aston Villa should have scored a second goal after just three minutes when Gil curled the ball into the near post and Agbonlahor blasted it towards the top corner. The ball went just over the bar, but Agbonlahor should never have missed that one!

We needed to do something so we brought off Clasie and brought on Reed with Wanyama now playing as defensive central midfielder. And that seemed to make some difference. It was Targett who took the ball over the halfway line and hit it in search of Tadic's run. Tadic latched unto the ball, got into the box and blasted the ball towards the top corner and scored the crucial equaliser!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/g4kywnsgh/JS49918475.png (http://postimage.org/)
Tadic did not play well, but he scored the goal which Saints needed so badly

Of course Aston Villa would need three goals now and they knew they were defeated. We brought on Long for Pellè and the game basically petered out, although Westwood managed to score a late goal for Villa.

But none of that mattered now. We had reached the League Cup Final and that's what mattered!

http://s6.postimg.cc/w7htlqu35/Aston.png (http://postimage.org/)

We sorely missed Van Dijk and we were fortunate that Stekelenburg played so well and that Tadic, who was all but invisible in this match, scored that all-important goal!

http://s6.postimg.cc/scefj6axd/Aston_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/ac9tsj841/Aston_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

So we shall now meet Man Utd or Arsenal in the League Cup Final! But first Everton will visit St.Mary's. And after having lost to Spurs and to Villa it's important that we win this next League match!

Redknapp69
28-11-15, 10:16 AM
Navigated through nicely although a bit of a scare!

Defenders still needs better quality IMO

samsami
28-11-15, 10:39 AM
Navigated through nicely although a bit of a scare!

Defenders still needs better quality IMO

Yes, at the end of this first season we'll have to decide who needs to be replaced. I assume if we qualify for the Champions League more players might be interested in joining us. Of course, we already have a shortlist. But ending in 4th place could make a lot of difference!

samsami
29-11-15, 08:02 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Everton surprise Saints

After a 10-day international break Everton visited St.Mary's. Everyone was fully rested and only Bertrand and Ward-Prowse were unavailable for this important League match. However, Targett has been playing so well lately that Bertrand's absence is hardly a problem for us.

It was not easy playing in the slippery conditions and Everton started very cautiously. Pellè had the first opportunity and he tried a left-footed volley, but he missed by a mile. A little later Henen headed the ball for Cleverley who found himself in some space and smashed the ball in low. Stekelenburg saved and deflected the ball clear, but it was Barkley who got to the loose ball and scored with a simple finish!

http://s6.postimg.cc/l5scy0zwx/ross_barkley_southampton.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Barkley is one of the players on our shortlist and our scouts have been following him lately

Then, at the end of the first half Barkley was brought down by Stekelenburg in the area, but for some reason the referee turned down the penalty appeal and we were extremely lucky to be down by only one goal at half-time.

In the second half we needed to score at least once and Mané was the first to try to curl one in from a long range but he put it just wide of the goal. A little later Pellè smashed the ball in low but it also went wide of the goal. So we decided to replace Pellè by Long and Mané by Rodriguez and actually that nearly gave us the goal we needed when Rodriguez fired the ball in low, but it hit the upright and rebounded away!

Two minutes later Naismith scored a goal that seemed to seal it for Everton but it was ruled out for offside. However, we did not manage to create another single scoring chance and so this match, which we had been looking forward to for so long, ended up becoming our third lost game in a row!

Now losing to Man Utd in the FA Cup Final was only to be expected and losing to Villa in the League Cup was no big problem either. But losing a League match to Everton at St.Mary's is little less than a disaster for our lads for whom the fourth place in the League would be the highest possible prize of the season.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ehhz67c9d/Everton.png (http://postimage.org/)

We played reasonably well, but Pellè was invisible and frankly, Everton was better than us. Having said that, Clasie was the Man-of-the-Match and Targett continues to impress friends and foes alike!

http://s6.postimg.cc/wj14406a9/Everton_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/tvg97e2mp/Everton_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Meanwhile, Fraser Forster played his second game with the reserves and he is not there yet, but he's getting there! It might be an idea to give him some game time in the first team now, as long as it is not a crucial game for us, of course.

http://s6.postimg.cc/50wrdbhsh/Forster.png (http://postimage.org/)

It should be clear that Everton and Liverpool are now our main contenders for the all-important fourth place. And since we shall soon have to play Chelsea, Man Utd and Arsenal, the big question is: Is it realistic to expect Champions League qualification of our inexperienced team?

http://s6.postimg.cc/3kl8v6evl/Table27.png (http://postimage.org/)

First we have to play two European games, though!

http://s6.postimg.cc/cqyy4puq9/Schedule.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
29-11-15, 02:48 PM
Just a bad day at the office :(

Good to see Targett coming on well - he's struggling in my Swansea team

Very long break before next league game! I assume Int'l break?

Couple of winnable European games for confidence but then a REALLY tough spell of games

samsami
29-11-15, 02:53 PM
Just a bad day at the office :(

Good to see Targett coming on well - he's struggling in my Swansea team
Very long break before next league game! I assume Int'l break?
Couple of winnable European games for confidence but then a REALLY tough spell of games

Exactly! We do so well in Europe and APOEL have a mediocre team so they can easily be eliminated from the UEFA Cup by us. Then we will have two more European games to play so our schedule will be busy and perhaps we'll keep games in hand as we play so many European games. But the games in hand are not winnable then.

Mark
29-11-15, 03:21 PM
Sneaked through in the end. Hope you get some glory in the final!

I'm looking forwards to seeing your work in the transfer market already. Can see that you'll need to add a bit of quality to the squad to become clear top 4 contenders.

samsami
30-11-15, 08:39 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat APOEL

APOEL Nicosia have a nice and friendly stadium but they do not have a very strong team so we decided to give Fraser game time again. And he played well. Not that APOEL produced many shots on goal, but Forster seemed relaxed and very confident.

http://s6.postimg.cc/554ti68cx/APOEL_Chelsea.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
The Pancyprian Gymnastic Association Stadium was built in 1999 and has a capacity of 22,859

Of course it helped a lot that Rodriguez scored an early goal with a fine header and that Pellè scored our second goal a little later, after Tadic had centred the ball from the right and Pellè had managed to beat the keeper to the ball. So you might say that after just 22 minutes we had already secured a place in the UEFA Cup Quarter Finals.

And indeed, the remainder of the game felt almost like a friendly match. There were no more goals and nobody seemed to mind much. Avoiding cards and injuries was more important to us.

http://s6.postimg.cc/b0yr5kno1/Away.png (http://postimage.org/)

We outplayed APOEL and Rodriguez was named Man-of-the-Match. And that is actually quite nice, too!

http://s6.postimg.cc/xzqerddch/Away_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/r1rcijljl/Away_R.png (http://postimage.org/)


Saints advance in Europe

Like the away game, the return match also ended in a 2-0 victory for us. This time both of our goals were scored in the second half. The first one by Mané with the assist coming from Wanyama, and the second goal was scored by none other than Steven Davis from a corner taken by Clasie.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ee6zsah8x/156021.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Steven Davis signed a new contract this week

So yes, Davis played very well to-day and he has actually informed us that he is now content to stay with the club. We need him as a backup and for the necessary squad depth. Because squad depth is one of our main problems and when we buy new players we don't want too many old players, like Davis, to leave the club.

http://s6.postimg.cc/c1yzup4nl/Home.png (http://postimage.org/)

We did not play quite as well as we did in Cyprus, but Forster certainly seems to be back! Clasie was superb, but it was Mané who was named Man-of-the-Match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/nqxxljpap/Home_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/g0w7ditap/Home_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent in the UEFA Cup Quarter Finals will be Dinamo Moscow. In fact, we will have to play them next week already! So that will be a total of three weeks without any Premier League matches for us!

Mark
30-11-15, 11:38 AM
Two solid results which will hopefully breed confidence for the forthcoming games. Most importantly, great to see Forster back and get two clean sheets even if he didn't have a lot to do :ok:

samsami
30-11-15, 11:43 AM
Two solid results which will hopefully breed confidence for the forthcoming games. Most importantly, great to see Forster back and get two clean sheets even if he didn't have a lot to do :ok:

Yes, indeed. I hope Forster will be more consistent than Stekelenburg who plays very well most of the time (and I hate to leave him on the bench) but he has an off-day (with a rating of 5 or 6) every 4 or 5 matches.

Redknapp69
01-12-15, 12:00 AM
so Forster is No.1 keeper now then?

Clean sheets but coming back to fitness and that was against an average team - a calculated game though if he is back to No.1 :ok:

Good QF draw as well - would expect you to come through that

Great news no injuries

ebfatz
01-12-15, 12:09 AM
Chelsea, United x2 and Arsenal to come.

Tough challenges.
This could be the making of this side.

samsami
01-12-15, 08:34 AM
so Forster is No.1 keeper now then?
Clean sheets but coming back to fitness and that was against an average team - a calculated game though if he is back to No.1 :ok:
Good QF draw as well - would expect you to come through that
Great news no injuries

Yes, Forster will be No.1 if he proves to be more consistent than Stekelenburg.


Chelsea, United x2 and Arsenal to come.
Tough challenges.
This could be the making of this side.

The makings of Saints? Now that would be nice! But if not, there's always the transfer window. I'm thinking that some players will pass the test (Chelsea, United x2 and Arsenal) and others will fail. But we'll see!

samsami
01-12-15, 08:43 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints continue their winning run in Europe

While most of the other clubs are playing their Premier League matches, we had to play yet another European match for the third Thursday in a row, this time in Moscow on 17th March.

Now Dinamo Moscow have a decent team, but perhaps they had an off-day. Or, perhaps we played one of our better games to-day. Whatever the case may be, we outplayed them and we won the match in a remarkably easy way.

Bertrand was back from his injury so we kept a disappointed Targett on the bench, but after ten minutes Mané had to go off injured so we brought on Targett as left defender and Bertrand continued as left midfielder. And that actually worked out very well!

It started when Bertrand gathered up the loose ball and sent it into the area in front of Wanyama who headed the ball and scored the opening goal for us!

http://s6.postimg.cc/5onowo3wx/Bertrand_Saints_570160.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Bertrand excelled as left midfielder against Dinamo Moscow

Because Clasie had received a yellow card we brought on Davis to replace him in the second half with Wanyama moving to the defensive central midfielder position.

We stayed in control of the match and in the 76th minute Bertrand scored our second goal! This time the assist came from Rodriguez and Bertrand actually tried to centre the ball from the right but it had a strange curve so Bertrand scored in bizarre fashion. Still, an assist and a goal on his first day as left midfielder is not bad at all!

http://s6.postimg.cc/spv3axosx/Din.png (http://postimage.org/)

Forster played a very solid game again. Pellè was also in top form, but it was Wanyama who was named Man-of-the-Match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/ug9iyogy9/Din_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/bduqphvbl/Din_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

The bad news is that Mané will be out for about four weeks, though!


A horrible day at the office for Saints

Four days later, on Monday 21st March we finally got to play another League match again! Our last League match had been on 27th February, when we lost 0-1 at home to Everton.

We expected so much of this match, especially after the three successful European games, and it was high time for us to win a Premier League match again, but apparently it was not meant to be. In fact, the whole match turned out to be somewhat of a disaster.

We were the better team in the first half hour until Pellè shoved Shawcross (what was he thinking??) and of course he was immediately sent off!

http://s6.postimg.cc/klw5xoh5d/Graziano_Pell_of_Southam_009.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè received a red card in the 33rd minute

We had little choice now but play without a striker and hope for the best, but it seemed that Stoke City were also unsure whether to attack or defend. So neither team created many scoring chances and just when we had reconciled ourselves with the thought that this game would end in a draw, disaster struck again: Wanyama had to leave the field injured!

So not only did we lose another two points to-day, but we also lost two key players in a match that we had counted on winning - in fact, a match that we had needed to win!

The only good thing is that Forster got his fourth consecutive clean sheet since his comeback from injury!

http://s6.postimg.cc/8mbgyvwsx/Stoke.png (http://postimage.org/)

We played without a striker for about an hour so perhaps you could argue that the goalless draw was a decent result. At least we did not lose, nor did we give Stoke much of a chance to score.

http://s6.postimg.cc/b2dacqevl/Stoke_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/qdn3dcc7l/Stoke_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

The worst thing is that Pellè will be banned for two matches and Wanyama will be out of action for about two weeks with a twisted knee. Between them they have scored over 50% of our goals so far! And of course Mané is also injured, for no less than four weeks!

In addition, Romeu suffered a stubbed toe in training so he will be out for a couple of weeks as well.

http://s6.postimg.cc/d7tcimx8x/Table28.png (http://postimage.org/)

We have a couple of games in hand, but we shall have to play Dinamo Moscow at St.Mary's next and after that it's the League Cup Final against Manchester United. There is so much going on right now that it's hard to concentrate on the Premier League.

Redknapp69
01-12-15, 09:53 AM
uuuugggghhhhhh - bad time for injuries :cry:

good news on Europe though and that should mean S/F beckons for you

Also - Forster getting games (and clean sheets) under his belt

samsami
01-12-15, 12:01 PM
uuuugggghhhhhh - bad time for injuries :cry:
good news on Europe though and that should mean S/F beckons for you
Also - Forster getting games (and clean sheets) under his belt

Spot on! The problem is, we could reach the League Cup Final and the UEFA Cup Semi-Final (which is great!) but lose the fourth place in the process.

Redknapp69
01-12-15, 02:07 PM
If you win UEFA and come outside of top 4 in Prem League do you qualify for CL in Champman?!

Mark
01-12-15, 02:07 PM
A few injuries now!

At least Forster has now played four and not conceded once :ok:

Pelle can be a temperamental arsehole :D

samsami
01-12-15, 02:09 PM
If you win UEFA and come outside of top 4 in Prem League do you qualify for CL in Champman?!

I don't know if that's the case. But I don't think we will win the UEFA Cup. With Spurs we did that in the first year :) But Saints is a different matter.


A few injuries now!
At least Forster has now played four and not conceded once :ok:
Pelle can be a temperamental arsehole :D

Yes, I am glad Forster is back. Hopefully, like I said, he will have fewer dips than Stekelenburg.

The end of this season is going to be very, very tough!!

kuy
01-12-15, 04:03 PM
2-0 win away from home in the first leg is a very good result - will you rest any players in the second leg?

samsami
01-12-15, 07:19 PM
2-0 win away from home in the first leg is a very good result - will you rest any players in the second leg?

Normally I would, but as it is Bertrand, Fonte, Wanyama, Mané and Ward-Prowse are already unavailable because of bans or injuries!

samsami
02-12-15, 09:20 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints reach UEFA Cup Semi-Final

On Thursday 24th March, three days after the Stoke disaster, we defeated Dinamo Moscow again - with Forster getting his fifth clean sheet!

After the 2-0 win in Moscow we had little to fear of our Russian opponents even though Bertrand, Fonte, Wanyama, Mané and Ward-Prowse were all unavailable because of injuries or European bans.

Remarkably, it was Juanmi who excelled to-day! He filled in for Mané, because Bertrand was banned for this match, and not only did he score the only goal of the match, but his passing was superb and his tackling was near perfect!

http://s6.postimg.cc/luxtojd8x/Juanmi.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Juanmi scored the only goal against Dinamo Moscow

It should be clear that Juanmi could become a key player for our first team before too long! He showed a lot of promise in the pre-season matches and seems to be slowly developing into a quality player now.

http://s6.postimg.cc/n7fiqfaoh/Din.png (http://postimage.org/)

A good win, but then again, we always seem to do well in Europe, mostly because so far we only got 'easy' opponents.

http://s6.postimg.cc/qd04gmtap/Din_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/w3qaud1ap/Din_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Our next opponent will be Schalke 04 in the UEFA Cup Semi-Final while Liverpool will be playing Lyon! Two interesting clashes...

And while most other teams continue to play their Premier League matches, we have a full ten-day break now and after that it's the League Cup Final against Man Utd - without Pellè and most probably still without Wanyama!

Redknapp69
02-12-15, 11:16 AM
tough draw against Schalke's wonderkids but the other Semi-Final looks tough as well - I'm hoping for a Saints v Pool final :)

samsami
02-12-15, 12:29 PM
tough draw against Schalke's wonderkids but the other Semi-Final looks tough as well - I'm hoping for a Saints v Pool final :)

Why am I not surprised?

kuy
02-12-15, 11:12 PM
No easy games in those semi-finals, I think you'll do well to make it to the final. Only three subs against Dinamo?! :eek:

samsami
03-12-15, 08:19 AM
No easy games in those semi-finals, I think you'll do well to make it to the final. Only three subs against Dinamo?! :eek:

I know. Too many injuries and bans and the reserves were not registered for European competitions.

samsami
03-12-15, 08:26 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Man Utd win League Cup Final

After a long break we finally played Man Utd in the League Cup Final on Sunday 3rd April 2016.

Now in a way the break did not do us any good, at least not for this particular match. We still had far too many injured players: Fonte (nearly fit so he stayed on the bench), Wanyama, Mané and also Romeu. In addition, Pellè is suspended.

As was to be expected, Man Utd came out with an attacking formation and Martial almost scored in the fourth minute already, but Forster saved in style! However, a little later Martial won the ball in the air from Ward-Prowse and this time Forster could not do anything against Martial's header!

http://s6.postimg.cc/l6tkjc3wx/138736.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Forster kept a clean sheet in the first five matches since he has came back from his injury

So Man Utd had their early goal and without Pellè and Wanyama (and Mané) we simply lacked scoring power. But then, totally out of the blue, Bertrand scored after Tadic had sent the ball to him and he had suddenly found himself with plenty of space. However, it was ruled out because Tadic had strayed offside.

And although Man Utd was the better team and created far more scoring chances than we did, they failed to score that second goal and all of sudden it was Juanmi who found the net with a long shot deep into the second half. But again it was ruled out, this time because Ward-Prowse had (supposedly) pushed Carrick.

On the other hand, Man Utd could have scored more goals, but Forster prevented them from doing so until Martial finally slipped through our defence and Forster clipped his feet in the area, or at least that's what the referee thought. Interestingly, Forster was not ejected with a red card, but Jones did score the penalty in the dying seconds of the game.

http://s6.postimg.cc/r8wlw32z5/Man.png (http://postimage.org/)

Apart from the two goals that were ruled out, we only produced one single shot on goal in the entire match! On the other hand our defence, including Forster - who finally conceded his first two goals in six matches - played extremely well! Of course we sorely missed Mané, Wanyama and Pellè as they are the ones who score by far the majority of our goals.

http://s6.postimg.cc/vtisb0moh/Man_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/ce80hwte9/Man_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

We better not reflect too long on this lost League Cup Final, though. We shall have to look ahead because on Thursday Schalke 04 will be visiting St.Mary's for the UEFA Cup Semi-Final 1st Leg and then on Sunday we shall be playing Arsenal, also at St.Mary's.

So we may not win any trophies this year, but reaching the League Cup Final and the UEFA Cup Semi-Final is one major achievement for our club!!

Redknapp69
03-12-15, 10:03 AM
A great effort in just getting to the final

Was too much of an ask with all your injuries though - you needed a full team and even then most would have had to play amazing (or some luck) to maybe lift the trophy

Hopefully this will not have an effect on the club for rest of season as still much to play for! (including a tough UEFA 1st leg)

Mark
03-12-15, 11:08 AM
Injuries and suspensions cost you chance of glory, the team just didn't turn up on the big day. Shame but you've done well in getting there in your first season.

kuy
03-12-15, 11:05 PM
No shame in losing to Utd, especially with all your injuries - like the others say, you've done really well just to get to the final!

ebfatz
03-12-15, 11:18 PM
Unlucky in the final, let's hope you make it to another. :ok:

samsami
04-12-15, 08:40 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints defeat Schalke 04 in five-goal thriller

On Thursday the 7th of April Schalke 04 visited St. Mary's for the first leg of the UEFA Cup Semi-Final. Our fans were more than excited, because Schalke have a great team with the likes of Kevin-Prince Boateng, Huntelaar, Matip, Álvarez and Meyer.

http://s6.postimg.cc/q8xks9pzl/fc_schalke_04.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

And it became an unforgettable evening!

Only Wanyama was still injured so we played Schalke with what is virtually our best possible formation. And it was Pellè who had the first chance, only Matip nicked the ball from his toes and cleared it! Both teams created several scoring chances after that. Schalke was particularly dangerous, though. Clemens hit a crashing drive from a distance which went just over the bar and Meyer actually hit the woodwork!

Then, just before half-time Álvarez scored for Schalke, which silenced the crowd for a minute or two until Pellè unexpectedly equalised after a superb long pass by Soares. Pellè climbed above Michael Gspurning and scored with a header! And it was perfect timing, too!

http://s6.postimg.cc/u02k0uea9/Southampton_v_Tottenham.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Pellè important for Saints against Schalke 04

Schalke seemed content with their away goal and in the second half we were the better team. And again it was Pellè who scored with a diving header!

We immediately replaced Ward-Prowse by Davis and we stayed in control of the match until Huntelaar came forward, continued into the penalty area and struck the ball with fury! But Forster managed to turn the ball away! However, when Álvarez whipped in the corner Uchida was fouled by Van Dijk so the referee awarded Schalke a penalty! Huntelaar stepped up and calmly scored from the spot!

A draw seemed inevitable now until the 89th minute when Davis managed to scored with a header - but it was ruled out, because Tadic was in offside position! Davis was furious with the referee who did not hesitate but pulled out a yellow card for him.

Our fans had already given up hope but two minutes later Clasie sent the ball into the area for Davis who got ahead of Gspurning to win the ball and score our third goal in the dying seconds of the game! And immediately the final whistle was blown!

So we beat Schalke 3-2! But will it be enough to reach the UEFA Cup Final? For now, our fans do not ask themselves that question. They are too busy celebrating!

http://s6.postimg.cc/6221zk53l/Sch.png (http://postimage.org/)

A real thriller which we only won - and deserved to win! - because of Schalke's poor defending. Pellè was named Man-of-the-Match.

http://s6.postimg.cc/tevi4bvtd/SCHS.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/rsavwu95d/Sch_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Hopefully this result will give us confidence again. On Sunday Arsenal will visit St.Mary's - and Pellè is banned for that match - and on Wednesday we have to play Newcastle. We currently have several games in hand so we have to play two Premier League games this coming week.

Mark
04-12-15, 11:10 AM
Fantastic win considering the quality of the Schalke side!

Bit worried that they scored two though, could help them in the return leg.

Redknapp69
04-12-15, 01:42 PM
Could be a vital last minute winner but I'm worried about the away goals they have

samsami
04-12-15, 01:52 PM
Fantastic win considering the quality of the Schalke side!

Bit worried that they scored two though, could help them in the return leg.


Could be a vital last minute winner but I'm worried about the away goals they have

You're both right, of course. But it's only the first season and at least we've shown them that we are real cup fighters!

samsami
05-12-15, 09:30 AM
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Arsenal hold Saints to a draw in dramatic fashion

On Sunday 10th April we played Arsenal. Now their season has been very disappointing so far, but nevertheless they have an excellent team and we knew this was never going to be an easy match. Especially since Arsenal would want revenge for the spectacular match at the Emirates Stadium in January when we beat them 4-1!

Pellè was banned and Mané was still injured, but at least Wanyama was back from his injury, so Ward-Prowse replaced Mané and Juanmi was our striker again, even though he did not play all that well in that role against Man Utd in the League Cup Final.

And we played quite well, but so did Arsenal. Only they seemed to take too many risks so that Monreal, Giroud and Cazoria had all received yellow cards already when Wanyama was fouled by Cazoria backing into him and a penalty was awarded! And Tadic made no mistake in scoring the penalty!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ljy8ntwwh/Dusan_Tadic.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Tadic scored from the penalty spot against Arsenal

Arsenal became more careful after this and of course we no longer needed to score so at half-time the score was still 1-0.

In the second half Arsenal was slightly better than us. Unfortunately Fonte got injured and had to go off so Yoshida replaced him but for the longest time it looked like we would simply win the match as Arsenal never created any real chances and nor did we.

But in the 89th minute Bellerin passed the ball to Alex Chamberlain who put a low cross into the near post, trying to reach Walcott, when Van Dijk sent Walcott to the floor with a hard tackle! And for the second time the referee awarded a penalty! And Walcott did not fail so that Arsenal dramatically equalised from the penalty spot!

In injury time we put Arsenal under some pressure and when Monreal slit through Juanmi he was sent off. Then Tadic looked to jink past Bellerin who dispossessed him with a superb sliding tackle. And then the final whistle was blown.

http://s6.postimg.cc/b1zi7iaq9/Ars.png (http://postimage.org/)

In all honesty, the 1-1 draw was the best result for this match. It just did not feel that way though, but Arsenal was actually the slightly better team.

Forster was named Man-of-the-Match. After five matches with a clean sheet he has conceded five goals in these last three tough matches against Man Utd, Schalke 04 and Arsenal, but three of those five goals were scored from the penalty spot.

http://s6.postimg.cc/madovaok1/Ars_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/owxspz55d/Ars_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Fonte will be out for about three weeks with a pulled hamstring. But at least Pellè and Mané should be available when we play Newcastle on Wednesday, so hopefully we will defeat the Magpies even though they are doing quite well and were well on their way to become the revelation of the season a few weeks ago.

Mark
05-12-15, 10:54 AM
Draw against Arsenal is decent :ok: Shame about the captain.

Redknapp69
05-12-15, 11:08 AM
What could have been a great 3 points gets cust short so close to the end

Looks like Pelle was really missed

Targett doing well to be keeping Bertrand out :ok:

samsami
05-12-15, 11:57 AM
What could have been a great 3 points gets cut short so close to the end
Looks like Pelle was really missed
Targett doing well to be keeping Bertrand out :ok:

Targett or Bertrand - it's hard to know who to play!


Draw against Arsenal is decent :ok: Shame about the captain.

Yes, Fonte will be missed. It seems Yoshida is not as good as Fonte, but we have no alternative. Gardos is still injured (the whole season so far!)

ebfatz
05-12-15, 11:33 PM
You need to be strong in that second leg

samsami
06-12-15, 08:23 AM
You need to be strong in that second leg

That will be one tough match in Germany, yes!

samsami
06-12-15, 08:29 AM
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Saints relieved after seeing off Newcastle

On Wednesday 13th April we had to travel to Newcastle without Fonte, who is injured, but with Pellè and Mané.

And that made all the difference, as it was Mané who picked up the loose ball and ran with it and then sent it into the area for Pellè to score with a superb header!!

So Pellè gave us an early lead and we needed it! Newcastle is doing surprisingly well this season and they are not easily defeated at St.James' Park. But our lads played well, even though it did mean that Ward-Prowse, Wanyama and Van Dijk were all shown yellow cards.

So in the second half we brought on Rodriguez for Ward-Prowse and Davis for Wanyama. And this worked out very well! Within minutes Targett had picked up the loose ball but when he realised that he had no space to shoot he fed Rodriguez who did not hesitate but hit the ball in low and scored our second goal of the day!

http://s6.postimg.cc/on0e0v369/rodriguez.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Rodriguez scores the important second goal against Newcastle

Newcastle tried to get back into the game and Rivière almost scored for them but Forster managed to turn the ball away. A long range effort by Marvaux went just over the bar. So after draws with Arsenal and Stoke and a lost game to Everton, we finally win a Premier League match again!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/lcty0kpu9/Newcastle.png (http://postimage.org/)

Match stats would indicate that Newcastle were the better team, but players ratings make it very clear that we deserved this win. Pellè was important again and Forster remains very consistent.

http://s6.postimg.cc/xdfe1ax8x/New_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/j9jiswq1d/New_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

With eight games remaining, the race for fourth place is still very much undecided, especially since West Ham, like us, have some very difficult games to play yet.

http://s6.postimg.cc/we6jltdqp/Table30.png (http://postimage.org/)

Meanwhile, it would appear that Forster has proved to be more consistent than Stekelenburg. He might just be the one who could make the difference in the final stages of this Premier League season!

http://s6.postimg.cc/xxbl1ng0h/Form_GK.png (http://postimage.org/)

Redknapp69
06-12-15, 05:52 PM
Everton up still in it for European places. Forster on fire

samsami
07-12-15, 09:09 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Pellè scores a hat-trick against Norwich

Norwich is struggling to avoid relegation and we had little trouble defeating them.

The first chance was for Norwich, though. Howson drove the ball in low but Forster saved in style! And just minutes later it was Pellè who scored the opening goal for us with a fine strike!

In the 34th minute Tadic was denied a great goal by Ruddy and just before half-time Mbokani drove the ball low towards the goal, but it was well held by Forster. A minute later it was Pellè once more who chipped the ball over Ruddy to score his second goal!

http://s6.postimg.cc/ej2hd87o1/process.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

We started the second half with Bertrand for Van Dijk and Rodriguez for Wanyama. However, Rodriguez quickly picked up a yellow card and Bertrand did not seem too comfortable as central defender. Nevertheless, we stayed in control of the game which was no longer very exciting, of course.

Then, two minutes after Dorrans had hit the post we were awarded a penalty when Ruddy clipped the feet of Mané and it was Pellè who scored from the spot to complete his hat-trick!

We brought on Juanmi for the last twenty minutes or so to give him some game time and he did produce two shots on goal, but they both went wide.

http://s6.postimg.cc/hqol7b0ep/Norwich.png (http://postimage.org/)

A well-deserved win. Remarkably it was not Pellè but Clasie who was named Man-of-the-Match. Forster and Ward-Prowse also played very well.

http://s6.postimg.cc/72g8uq11t/Nor_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/5rd2zzutt/Nor_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Meanwhile, Chelsea vs West Ham ended in a 2-2 draw, so West Ham stays in the race for now, but they have some more very tough games coming up soon...

http://s6.postimg.cc/nsw7xsoup/Table31.png (http://postimage.org/)

We have to travel to Germany to play Schalke 04 on Thursday and after that we shall have the weekend off.

Mark
07-12-15, 02:33 PM
Two great results there, samsami. Looks like Pelle is in great form and really benefiting from the tactic.

Good luck against Schalke!

samsami
07-12-15, 03:11 PM
Everton up still in it for European places. Forster on fire

And it's still the case! It could be a very close race!

ebfatz
07-12-15, 10:26 PM
Those games in hand could be vital in the run in.

kuy
08-12-15, 12:01 AM
Great to see Forster playing well, not long to go now! We'll get a better picture once the games in hand have been played

Redknapp69
08-12-15, 01:30 AM
2 games in hand v West Ham - maybe you are 4th place favourites now

No injusry to Pelle/Forster :pray:

samsami
08-12-15, 07:40 AM
http://s6.postimg.cc/63sfvdfpt/banner.jpg (http://postimage.org/)

Saints earn shock win in Gelsenkirchen

What nobody dared to hope for after the narrow 3-2 victory at St.Mary's actually happened on 21st of April. We defeated Schalke 04 again at the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen!

The first half would have been quite boring if so much had not been at stake. The first chance was for Schalke when Clemens hit the ball in low, but Forster made a great save.

Tadic actually scored after 34 minutes but it was ruled out as Pellè was clearly offside. And that was about it, except for the yellow card shown to Clasie for holding Clemens and a good save by Foster after a header by Huntelaar, but the linesman already had his flag up so none of that really mattered.

In the second half we brought on Ward-Prowse for Clasie while Wanyama took over as defending central midfielder. And now Schalke became stronger. After all, they needed to score that one goal! Aogo struck a freekick from a good spot, but the wall deflected the shot. A little later Huntelaar broke the offside trap and was clean trough on goal, but Forster saved his shot and held the ball well!!

Ward-Prowse and Pellè also produced shots on goal but they went over the crossbar. And then Hunntelaar picked up a knock and had to go off! He was replaced by Di Santo, but it was a blow for Schalke.

Three minutes later Wanyama fed the ball to Ward-Prowse in the area and Ward-Prowse stretched to reach the pass and when he found himself left unmarked he tried a low right-footed drive and found the net!!

http://s6.postimg.cc/l5wwo8csx/ward.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
Ward-Prowse replaced Clasie to score the winning goal!

Schalke now had just twenty minutes to score twice. Di Santo sent the ball wide of the goal when he tried a low drive and Alvarez almost scored from a free kick but it went just wide of the goal and in the end the luckiest team won the match to go to the final!

http://s6.postimg.cc/5mwstxzv5/Schalke.png (http://postimage.org/)

For the neutral fan it was a disappointing match and it certainly wasn't one of our best games of the season. Clasie and most of our defenders were clearly under-performing, but ultimately it's the end result that is remembered!

http://s6.postimg.cc/njc6i2mkx/Schalke_S.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/g76qcj4cx/Schalke_R.png (http://postimage.org/)

Meanwhile in France Liverpool was eliminated by Lyon by penalty shoot-out so we will be playing Lyon in the UEFA Cup Final!

http://s6.postimg.cc/z9q3zgfdd/Results.png (http://postimage.org/)

And over the weekend West Ham kept surprising. This time they held Man Utd to a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford! Meanwhile, Swansea was barely defeated (0-1) by a tired Liverpool side. For Liverpool this means that they are still fighting to not be left empty-handed this season as the fourth place is not out of reach for the Reds.

For us, we have the most games in hand but of our seven games remaining five will be away games. And what's worse, we will be facing the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool, Man Utd and Man City so it could end up being a fascinating race for fourth place!

http://s6.postimg.cc/6j2h0vob5/Table31.png (http://postimage.org/)

http://s6.postimg.cc/3ra0isb0x/Fixtures.png (http://postimage.org/)

samsami
08-12-15, 08:50 AM
Those games in hand could be vital in the run in.

Yes, and as you can see now, they are not the easiest of games :)


No injury to Pelle/Forster :pray:

Exactly! If Pelle gets injured we have no decent striker to replace him! They have all been on the bench most of the season. For Forster at least we still have Stekelenburg.


Great to see Forster playing well, not long to go now! We'll get a better picture once the games in hand have been played

Forster = clean sheet (almost) :)

kuy
08-12-15, 01:28 PM
Ouch, you have a tough run of games in hand - and on top of that, you'll be tired from cramming them all into a short period of time and doing lots of travelling. I fear that may be the end for your top four ambitions.

Great to get into the Europa League final though! Lyon could be tough but I reckon you've beaten better teams before this...

samsami
08-12-15, 05:16 PM
Ouch, you have a tough run of games in hand - and on top of that, you'll be tired from cramming them all into a short period of time and doing lots of travelling. I fear that may be the end for your top four ambitions.

Great to get into the Europa League final though! Lyon could be tough but I reckon you've beaten better teams before this...

I really hope we can manage to end in the top four. It is possible, but like you indicate, we may lose to the big guns and not make it. It's very hard to say who will end in fourth place this year!! But it's more important than defeating Lyon in the UEFA Cup Final. Fourth place will make us a better team next year!

Mark
08-12-15, 05:37 PM
Ouch, what a tough run in!

Great stuff in Europe though, well done on reaching the final!

ebfatz
09-12-15, 12:13 AM
18th, 20th, 22nd and 24th.

Yowsers!

I have faith though. Only one win behind West Ham and Everton having played three games less. I think you'll leapfrog them, as will Man City.

Your tight defence will see you through the league issue. The final? Very much 50/50.