|Southampton 2 v 2 Brighton and Hove Albion|
Barclays Premier League
Monday, 17th September 2018 Kick-off 20:00
Saints V Brighton The Preview
Sunday, 16th Sep 2018 11:00
Saints beat the Seagulls a few weeks ago in the Carabao Cup down in sunny Sussex, now they need to do it in front of the St Mary's faithful.
Mark Hughes needs to win this game for more than one reason, of course we need the points that will take us to the verge of the top ten, but we also need to win in front of our own fans and show that the confidence is returning.
I have said before that the issues of last season have been rectified, we have a positive manager in charge, an in form keeper, a dominant centre half and more importantly a striker who can score goals, with all those issues done and dealt with we only lack one thing and that is confidence.
We will only get that by winning games and we need to do that at St Mary's a lot more regularly than we did last season.
We all have to put the debacle that unfolded behind us, we need positive vibes in the stands and in turn that can create a positive atmosphere for the team to win and win well.
Mark Hughes has a couple of injury doubts, but such is the strength in depth that it shouldn't be a problem.
Shane Long would be the biggest loss, he offers us things that are not always noticed by the supporters, the ability to hold up the ball, lay it off and create space for others was in evidence at Crystal Palace a couple of weeks ago and it was no co incidence that the pattern of the game changed when he had to go off injured.
Hughes is starting to get the blueprint of how he wants to play and who he sees as the key players, he has bedded them in and now needs to get them playing as they have done in the last couple of games.
That means getting them motivated to get the ball forward quickly and play without fear, under Claude Puel & Mauricio Pellegrino we were over coached, the players were scared to get the ball forward they were scared to try to play decisive killer balls, it was all about keeping possession and Hughes biggest problem is having to change the mentality in the squad and that is not something that you can do overnight.
I don't expect Hughes starting XI to be much different from the one that started against Palace injuries aside, that had a good strong back four who are starting to get used to each other and gel, a solid midfield and good outlets both wide and up front.
Its a good solid backbone with options, it just needs Mark Hughes to put into action all he has spoken about including the need to be more positive.
So this game is crucial, Hughes needs to start getting the fans on side and behind the team, already it is looking to be the lowest Premier League crowd at St Mary's in many years, bizarrely that could work in our favour, as Hughes has to get back to basics perhaps the crowd does too, the team needs the fans behind it, it seems like the most vocal in criticising are staying away on Monday evening, it might be an advantage.
Lawrie McMenemy always said that the difference between Newcastle & Southampton was here the crowd is initially more subdued, the team has to give something to the crowd and then the fans will respond.
Perhaps this is a time when the crowd need to show the team that they still have faith, if both can perform then we can win this game and move forwards, then perhaps the doubters will start to realise that the club is not in as much chaos as some would have you believe and that one bad season has been ridden and we have come through the other side.
Get two free £10 bets on Southampton v Newcastle United (or other matches) by opening a new account at William Hill. Place an initial bet of a minimum of £10 and William Hill will give you two £10 bets. You must enter the promotional code ''F20'' when signing up as a new customer.
Photo: Action Images
Please report offensive, libellous or inappropriate posts by using the links provided.
You need to login in order to post your comments
Blogs 29 bloggers
A Dale Fan Abroad - Reflections on Burton Albion 1 Rochdale 2 by DaleAddict
Lying in bed awake on Friday night I was struck by ‘the fear’. By around midnight it had consumed me, and all of my optimism for the season ahead was gone.
A Dale Fan Abroad - Introduction by DaleAddict
My 11-month old son is taking his afternoon nap. My wife is sunning herself on the balcony of our apartment in Salzburg, Austria. It’s the height of summer, but I have only got one thing on my mind; Burton Albion vs Rochdale.
A Hollywood script plays out in the Spotland sun by AtThePeake
It isn’t always easy being a Rochdale supporter. With the majority of the town’s footballing interest being soaked up by local behemoths Manchester City and Manchester United, the club’s attendances rarely break 3,000 home supporters.
Gylfi Not Irreplaceable- But Not Trying To Directly Replace Him Is Smart by BarneyLW
So the dust has finally settled. In what seemed like the most painstaking saga in living memory, Gylfi Sigurdsson is an Everton player. A man the club were silently resigned to eventually losing has moved on and like so often in the past, the club must plan for life without their star player.
Too many things for a title, but stop with the xenophobia accusations! by waynekerr55
I had planned to write this in a different fashion, but Bob Bradley's departure from the club changes a section of this blog. The conclusion was as expected. A seemingly good man and a tryer who simply wasn't up to the job. In short he should never have been given the job.
[ Vote here ]