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Saints V Leicester City The Verdict
Saturday, 26th Oct 2019 09:19

A game like this gets the in depth review that it deserves, I don't think many will disagree with what I have to say about a night even our best player of the season so far VAR let us down.

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mattlegod added 09:34 - Oct 26
I've said it before, I'll say it again.. it's all gone wrong since Danny Rohl left. We also need to drop Valery, Yoshida and Gunn from the starting line up. Valery is not a capable premiership defender, ok going forward but hopeless in defense.

saintjf added 09:40 - Oct 26
Top small club, with top owner, top manager, and some excellent players beats the exact opposite away from home 9 goals to 0. Nobody in their right mind expected Saints to win. Leicester did what Bournemouth did in that first half a few weeks ago. They ripped us a part. They really are a top side. I know some are in denial about how bad we are ( the tiresome bedwetters reference keeps coming up). Even those deluded souls must realise we are heading one way. Leicester were technically so much better than Saints never mind that Saints did not seem to try. If we had tried it would probably have been nil 5 instead of nil 9 . This thrashing has been coming for a while. Losing by 9 to 0 at home....

DPeps added 09:45 - Oct 26
This was not a freak result. Teams who get pasted this badly pretty much always go down (Sunderland, Villa, Ipswich etc). You can only flirt with relegation for so long, and I think our time has come. We've been eroded over the last few seasons, and are now a shell of the team we were. Anyone on here who still thinks that 'we're a good team with a few flaws' needs to take a hard look at the reality.

When you go down to ten men you have to change the way you set up, but Ralph doesn't seem to get that.

Steve McManaman summed it up on the commentary: 'southampton has some terrible players'. Only Redmond and the fans who stayed came out of tonight's game looking respectable. 

And I hope no-one on here is naive enough to lay the blame at the red card. Teams go down to ten men and still can perform

davidargyll added 10:01 - Oct 26
I read that the owners are standing behind RH.
The fact is simply he cannot stay. The players are clearly not playing for him and the crowd leaving at half time last night, including me, speaks volumes. He will be so heavily jeered at at the next home game it will be impossible.
No matter what the Board say now it’s only a matter of time. The sooner he goes the better.
I reckon it’s 2 weeks max
Others have said that sacking Hassengotaclue won’t make any difference? Are you serious?. You mean you reckon than a new man will make things actually worse??!!
We are in a hole of our own making as we all know.
Yes we were smacked most definitely by a top side but capitulating like we did is unforgivable.
I used to think we had technical ability and knew how to play. Is there really no man to man marking practiced? That’s what it looked like last night.
I’ve always thought we might survive this season on goal difference. Looks like that dream has gone out the window!
PS. One statistic that shows the mountain we have to climb. 5 years ago 975 goals were scored in the PL and the bottom 10 teams conceded 55% of them. Last season there were 1072 and the bottom half conceded 60% of them. In other words the bottom half are playing worse relative to the top. If you want to stay in the PL standing still is not good enough, you have to improve your defence JUST TO STAND STILL. What have we done? Got worse!! We are staring at the proverbial trap door. And it isn’t even November!!

landsdownsaint added 10:10 - Oct 26
I can only blame RH for this , his team selections are abysmal , the system he try’s to play requires players of much higher ability than what we’ve got, I’m pretty sure the players have had enough of his selections , I also think the fitness isn’t there , JWP & PEH just don’t make the ball , iv never said this b4 but Yoshida & Valery were the 2 worse performances in the PL iv ever seen !... Vestergaard ain’t worth mentioning

A1079 added 10:14 - Oct 26
The club is a complete mess from top to bottom. For too long the cracks have been papered over, we have got away with it by the skin of our teeth, but finally the crack became a major earthquake exposing the depths of a lack of foundation beneath it on and off the field.

Look at this club, since the close season, the season ticket fiasco, the shirt fiasco, the delays on the membership cards, the complete lack of communication, the panic last minute buying of Danso, Danny Rohl leaving just as the season starts - a club without any direction, disorganised in every department. Kat Liebherr has presided over the undoing of her Father's legacy, the decisions that she and Gao have made past and present have sent our club in a downward spiral.

Quite what has happened in that dressing room between Ralph and the players heaven knows but even in the bad times in the past, I cannot recall such a level of capitulation (and yes, I did witness the 7-1 at Watford, 6-2 against Spurs). You cannot blame the red card. Loads of teams go down to 10 men and yes, you may lose the game but you dig in and fight for every ball - some even go on and win. There was strong evidence of this lack of fight against Bournemouth and Chelsea and last night it was horribly exposed. Ok, we have a poor squad with some average players, but I doubt a league 2 team would have capitulated like that. JWP may not be everything, but he did always seem to play for the club - but not this season - I said at Wolves - he looks a player now lost, miserable, not wanting to play. There was not an ounce of pride or dignity or respect amongst any of the players out there last night, not an ounce.

For the life of me, I don't know where we go from here. I would probably ask Adkins to come back. It may not change what now seems an inevitable outcome but he may bring some man management skills and some self belief back. Everything suggests Ralph has completely lost the team and quite why or how that has happened in such a small space of time, I really do not know.

I really do not know where we go from here. I don't want the usual platitudes by the players and manager about we must do better, abject apologies, blah, blah, blah - they are meaningless and it happens all too often. They will go and put in a performance against Man C in the cup and will think that makes everything alright but probably next weekend or soon after we will repeat this again, because this is a team and a club in crisis and you can accuse me of bedwetting all you want, but even under Branfoot I don't recall seeing a set of players so lacking in pride or desire for the club or the fans or owners who seem so disconnected with the club.

I purchased my tickets for Arsenal in the week and wondering whether I can send them back because that is not a cheap day out.

underweststand added 10:24 - Oct 26
DPeps is right about red card comment -we managed a point against Man U when down to 10 men, but Leicester didn't mind getting their heads wet and were totally ruthless.
If this is Ralph's "best / favourite / optimal" start side then it needs a major re-think PDQ.

I won't make individual criticisms -as it would take too long (and even Nick can't put the blame totally on Yoshida) but it was the worst game I've seen in 60+ years as a Saints fan.

The likes of; McCarthy, Boufal, Armstrong, Long - and even Stephens need a run-out AND picked to play in their best postions, Ralph's chop/change formations put too many players in postions where they are poor/ ineffective. JWP is not a defender, and Redmond created havoc last season playing wide on the left, but now scraps around in MF with very few chances to shoot-let alone score, and the whole weight of "our strike force" has landed on Danny Ings. We need a stronger midfield with some "bite and muscle".

Expecting Ché Adams to step up a division and continue scoring goals has been shown to be a fallacy, but as we are never going to be in the market to spend even £30 million for a player, we need to continue trailing through the lower divisions in the hope of finding suitable talent ...hopefully before relegation becomes a foregone conclusion.

It's Ironic that the likes of Targett, Reed, Jones, Sims and Hesketh ( Academy products every one of them)..... aren't around and have the opportunity to show up and be seen, but two away games in a week against Man. City might be the make / break time for some of the present squad.


saintmark1976 added 10:48 - Oct 26
A1079, brilliant post pointing out and linking the off field failings with what we saw last evening on the pitch. For some reason my computer won't let me read Nick's report so I can only assume that even he has now seen the light of day that most contributors were aware of months ago?

I'm sorry to say it because I don't want anybody to loose their job but the manager has to go. No greater example of his tactical ineptitude have I ever seen than yesterday.Standard coaching practice when you are reduced to ten men is to play two banks of four with one man up top to give the defence an "out ball". The "out ball" player should have been Redmond who despite his many other failings does at least have pace and would have taken two Leicester players away from the others swarming all over us. Truly, if Ralph can't see this simple tactic then in my opinion there's no hope for him going forward.

Having said the above it would be churlish not to give praise to Leicester who's football was at times


saintmark1976 added 10:49 - Oct 26
a delight to watch .

vanmans added 10:53 - Oct 26
It looks like it might be time for Ralph Hasenhuttl to go. He still does not know his best team and keeps playing under preformers like Prowse, Hojbjerg and Redmond. When losing 0-5 at halftime why did he put 2 more central defenders on and take Ings off when we needed to score goals? He has lost the plot.

HythePeer added 11:01 - Oct 26
Hasenhüttl was asked before the game if his defence lineup would concede, he said "Nein".

saintmark1976 added 11:08 - Oct 26
vanmans, the suggestion on another site is that at half time in the dressing room Ings called Ralph "a joke" and was immediately substituted. True or not,who knows? What is unquestionable in my opinion is that in our other recent games the manager's team selection and substitutions have been beyond the comprehension of most fans let alone I imagine the players. Plot lost? All evidence points in that direction.

NewburySaint added 11:13 - Oct 26
Supporters fault, Yoshi’s fault, we have very good players, nothing wrong with our current owners blah, blah......

I travel from & to Newbury by train every game & I was that embarrassed last night (& still am) that when I got back to Southampton Central I went to the Gents to take my shirt off because I didn’t want to be seen outside of Soton with it on.

No matter what every single 1 of those players that were involved last night do from now on, with Saints or elsewhere, I will never forgive them for that & that’s all I’ll remember them for.

saintnik added 11:21 - Oct 26
I suggest that the fans dont turn up for the Everton home game to show their disgust for the utter contempt of the management and owners.

Kingsland34 added 11:22 - Oct 26
Shocked but not suprised that Ralph's smoke and mirrors deceptions have been completely exposed. Unless he can rapidly pull some magic hares out of his hut it has to be auf wiedersehn.

Colburn added 11:38 - Oct 26
We've been trying to halt the slide since the club changed their ambition, which led to Koeman walking.. Its going to be tough for Ralph to turn this round, losing Rohl was huge. Ralph now a lonely figure with inexperienced support staff and seemingly no management above him since Kreuger and Reed went.

Danso missed pre season so he's a young lad playing catch up whilst trying to learn a new league. We are too concerned with club policy of only buying players who may make us a profit when everyone knows experience is vital at the back, along with leadership, which is why Maya has not been the answer. Cahill would have been ideal and would have helped the younger ones to improve which would in turn increase their value. We seem to have become very naive with all of our decision making.

I feel that although he's a decent coach, Ralph may have to go after last night. Gary Monk would be my preference. Saints man, knows the leagues and what is required. If we went down, he would be also ideal for the rebuild but again. However, without ambition in the board room, we will head towards league 1 again.. Look at Stoke and Huddersfield now..

claus5 added 11:58 - Oct 26
Our captains pathetic interview made me feel sick. He is without doubt the worst player to ever wear the armband of ours or any premier league club. I've got a suggestion for him,try running and tackling and passing. He was not alone last night, only Ings and to a lesser extent Gunn looked anywhere near good enough. At least 8 of the players should never wear OUR shirt again, obviously you can't drop them all on tuesday, but that is what they deserve. If any of them had anything about them they would pay everyone back for last night, of course they nor the club would do such a thing. In 43 years of watching my team i have never felt such shame and anger towards a bunch players.

landsdownsaint added 11:58 - Oct 26
I believe Ings did say that , PEH interview after he said it can’t tell you something coz I’d be in trouble in the morning “ the players are done with RH tactics etc imho

Consigliere added 12:00 - Oct 26
Well I assume that first thing on Monday morning the club will be contacting the nearest forge to ask them to strike medals to award to those few of us who remained in our seats until the final whistle. In nearly 40 years of watching the Saints that was the worst performance I have seen, and I have seen quite a few. It wasn't that we lost the game - that was always on the cards. It was the manner of the losing. The team simply gave up after the first goal and the sending off. We might just as well not have had a midfield. Its no use blaming the defence (although I do blame the defence), the midfield is the engine room of the team and it was simply switched off. The manager and the team need to ask themselves - can we work together. I assume from all I have read and seen that the answer may be "No" so whilst I am not usually one for calling for the manager's head, if that is the honest position then better now than later.

That by itself will not be enough of course. Who could get this team motivated if not RH? I heard talk on the radio of Allardyce (please, no) or Monk (see above post - not a bad shout) or even bringing back Adkins (always liked him and lets face it, if we go down to the Championship he was good for us there) but it needs someone who knows his best team, puts square pegs in square holes and can grind out horrible games in horrible conditions. RH plainly can't.

Sometime you have to lose, but some losses are career-ending. I think this is one of them.

wibbersda added 12:04 - Oct 26
There is no way back from this. The confidence is totally shot. We are going down and with a 200m debt the club could actually fold within the next 2 years. That's how bad it is. Without a Total clean out top to bottom we really have no chance. Sad dark days ahead.

halftimeorange added 12:29 - Oct 26
Personally, I think that last night shows the gap between the better teams and the rest. Leicester invested £40M in Tielemans and it shows. They have Vardy who is a prolific striker, a solid centre back in Söyüncü and Casper Scmeichel in goal. In other words they have the four key elements for success - a top keeper, a commanding defender, a playmaker and a goalscorer. Saints have possibly only one of those - Ings but, only in a generally more talented side. It is unlikely that Saints will be the only outfit thrashed this season by top opponents which is a warning to the EPL. Fans do not want to see their club humiliated and, whilst Sky/BT might think walkovers boost their viewing figures, most neutrals prefer to watch true competition. As for Saints, a spell in the Championship allowing the club to properly regroup might not be a bad thing. The owners should also consider whether their management strategy is going to deliver long term results that satisfy them and their supporters. If not, they should endeavour to sell up and let better brains move in, otherwise a downward spiral will be the only outcome. This pitiful situation has occurred, as others have noted, because of gross mismanagement or, indeed, non-management over a several seasons.

LordDZLucan added 12:58 - Oct 26
The Chelsea performance wasn't much better than that. The difference was we only lost 4-1. There is clearly something badly wrong in the dressing room and in that situation the manager has to go.

SanMarco added 13:54 - Oct 26
I think Consigliere has said roughly what I wanted to say. My initial reaction was sacking the manager is the kind of reaction from a board/ownership covering up their own culpability but this morning I'm wondering whether Ralph has lost the plot/team/whatever.

The basic problem is the near total lack of quality. For a while Ralph seemed to have the knack for getting the most out of what he had to work with but that seems to be rebounding to even worse than before now. Last night wasn't a tragedy (39 people suffocating in a lorry is a tragedy) but the worst defeat in the club's history has to have MEANING, it has to create a MEANINGFUL response. The players are what we are stuck with (and tactics aside Ralph can't be blamed for the fact that there are no high quality reserves) so it surely has to be the club up for sale and/or sack the manager. Waffle like 'we need a response against Man City' is totally inadequate as a reaction to what happened last night. Yes chickens are coming home to roost but this needs to be a TURNING POINT - otherwise no reason it won't be 10 next time.

bstokesaint added 14:42 - Oct 26
Absolutely shambolic, but no huge surprise. A tonking felt well overdue. How ironic it’s against a team that chose to invest in the season we chose to settle and let everyone else pass us by. Yes, we can sack Ralph (not sure we can’t after that), but then he will just join the list with Puel (who more and more feels like the only near success story), Pellegrino and Hughes. You can’t put a sticky plaster over a broken spine and expect miracles. We’re lost at sea and we need some proper owners. We need another Markus. Someone who loves this club as we do and wants to take us places. We’re currently a pathetic joke and the fans have been robbed, not only of their hard owned money, but of their pride. I was getting messages last night from people I haven’t heard from in 3 years, or aren’t even interested in football just to add to the humiliation. I can’t see a turnaround until this club gets bought out and we can start over. Fair play to any fans that stayed to the end. The club doesn’t deserve you.

bstokesaint added 14:46 - Oct 26
A good start would be the manager and players chipping in a week’s salary to pay the home fans back. Don’t know how they can sleep at night after taking payment for that pathetic show. I’ll never forget the ‘team’ who played tonight. Nor will the history books.

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