Long Term Injury List Grows As Southampton Boss Hasenhuttl Gives Update
Monday, 18th Jan 2021 14:56
Saints manager Ralph Hasenhuttl has spoken of how his injury list is growing and shows no sign of abating at least in the short term, with several players unlikely to play in the next month or so.
Speaking ahead of the FA Cup Tie against Shrewsbury Town, Ralph Hasenhuttl has revealed that he has a big problem with an injury list that just keeps growing.
Hasenhüttl is already without Danny Ings, Jannik Vestergaard, Oriol Romeu, Nathan Redmond, Moussa Djenepo, Will Smallbone, Michael Obafemi and Mohammed Salisu for tomorrow’s FA Cup third-round tie against Shrewsbury at St Mary’s.
“Not on Tuesday, definitely not, but maybe on Saturday,” he said of potential return dates. “The earliest return will be Ingsy, then Moussa maybe, with Ori and Reddy also in this group.
“Then maybe Jannik, but that can be in February, and Salisu is still longer out with a muscle injury.
“We have some problems at the moment with muscle injuries and there are some reasons I think that are responsible for this.
“We are in a fantastic building here but we cannot use anything (due to Covid-19). We cannot use our cryo chamber, the sauna, the pool, nothing, and we have still the same games with the same intensity.
“We are also limited in eating here together, so everything is not what we normally do in professional football, and there are reasons why we do it normally, so it’s not so surprising in some moments you have more injuries.
“It will be a mixed group tomorrow – some guys who have to play, because there are not a lot of alternatives, and some young guys will have to step in and show what they have shown in the sessions: that they are developing their game and deserve to get a chance to play.”
So whatever his plans for the FA Cup 3rd round tie the Austrian will have to rejig them and consider how he is going to be able to put out a strong side and also be able to not put too many of his senior players at risk of joining the injury list.
As mentioned in some positions he has no backup at all, especially in the centre of defence where he has no real cover for Jack Stephens and Jan Bednarek.
The reason why Saints are having so many injuries is cause for concern especially as most of them appear to be muscle injuries sustained both in games and training, in truth although games have come thick and fast it has been no more than in other seasons at this time of year.
But it could be that issues last season where players had to have an enforced lay off and then the restart followed by a quick recuperation break have thrown many players out of sync with what they have been used to in a fitness regime.
Also as Ralph has pointed out, due to potential Covid 19 issues some of the usual therapy tools used to keep players fit and aid recovery are not able to be used at present.
Al in all it doesn't bode well for the next month or so, we just have to dig in and try to keep going with the hope that if we can win a game or two in the premier League and also the FA Cup then in a month's time we will have players coming back from injury and as we did back in June, burst back into form just at the right time.
Photo: Action Images
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Letters from Wiltshire #35 by wessex_exile
As many were predicting, time finally ran out for Steve Ball mid-week, after the U’s lost 2-1 at home to Exeter City. Although a considerable improvement in score-line compared to the 6-1 thrashing they handed out at St James Park earlier in the season, apart from the first 10-15 minutes and very brief glimpses throughout the remainder of the game, it was a poor performance, leaving Robbie Cowling with no choice. After a brief interlude, Robbie named Wayne Brown as our new Interim Head Coach (that’s caretaker as far as I’m concerned), and after an even briefer interlude, Robbie and Wayne in a joint statement put to rest any lingering concerns about Wayne’s attitude to race. If Wayne can show the same sort of leadership on the training ground and in the dressing room as he used to show for the U’s on the pitch, I am certain he’s going to do very well in the job.
Letters from Wiltshire #34 by wessex_exile
I won’t dwell on Robbie’s latest message to the supporters – we’ve all read it, and we’ve all probably drawn our own conclusions about what it doesn’t say as much as what it does. To me, bottom line, I suspect the clock is now ticking for Steve Ball (at least), turn around this terrible form pretty damn quick, or start clearing out your locker. Regardless of personal opinions on any of the individuals concerned, I would like to think none of us actually wants to see people made redundant in the current climate. But, these are difficult times that require tough decisions. If Steve Ball is up to the job and can turn this around, I’ll be more than happy to support him. If he’s not, he has to go before irreparable harm is done…and we all know what that will look like, we’ve been there before…
Letters from Wiltshire #33 by wessex_exile
Today we face a trip to Crawley, not usually a venue that bears fruit for the U’s it has to be said. In nine visits we’ve only won once in the league, and once in the League Cup. Of course, we’ll all remember that League Cup victory, indeed many of us were probably there to see us progress through to 5th round and the dream fixture against Manchester United at Old Trafford. All of our goal-scorers that night, Luke’s Norris and Gambin, and Cohen Bramall (okay, technically an O.G.), are no longer with us, so let’s hope at the very least that recent departee and subsequent returnee Frank Nouble can bag another like his late equaliser against Mansfield. Steve Ball commented during the week about how tight the league is at the moment, and he’s right that a couple of back to back victories would see us move significantly up the table away from danger – but we’ve got to win them first Steve – something we’ve failed to do since our 1-0 victory at Scunthorpe on December 8th.
Letters from Wiltshire #32 by wessex_exile
Fifty years ago yesterday, Colchester United of the 4th Division pulled off the greatest cup giant-killing ever, beating 1st Division Leeds United 3-2 at Layer Road. Watched by 16,000, and the Match of the Day cameras, Dick Graham’s U’s, a rag-tag band of mostly aging journeymen, defied the odds to defeat arguably the greatest club side in Europe at the time. “The greatest cup giant-killing ever” is a bold claim, and over the years various football magazines and websites have run their own polls of which was the greatest. Whilst that day at Layer Rd always features, as the years have gone by other feats fresher in the memory have been put forward as a candidate – we probably all remember Ronnie Radford’s screamer against Newcastle, Sutton’s exploits, or even Bradford City quite recently at Stamford Bridge – but these pale into insignificance when you pause to reflect on the Don Revie side that we beat that day. Sprake, Cooper, Charlton, Hunter, Lorimer, Giles etc – all full internationals, all household names – the only one missing was Billy Bremner, and that was because he was injured. By comparison, all we had to offer was Ray Crawford – at his peak arguably on a par with some in the Leeds side, but that peak had been ten years earlier playing for Ipswich and England. Eleven heroes didn’t just try and hold out against Leeds United, they took the game to their illustrious opponents with such tenacity, grit and no small amount of flair, and before we knew it, the U’s were 3-0 in the lead. As legs tired, Leeds got back into the game with goals from Hunter and Giles, but we held firm – typified at the death by Graham Smith pulling off an impossible save to ensure the U’s achieved the greatest cup giant-killing ever!
Letters from Wiltshire #31 by wessex_exile
And so the dust settles on another transfer window closing, and despite (my) expectations that the possibility of incoming business was going to be remote, we have instead seen a veritable flurry of activity, with no less than three coming in. Big Frank Nouble, making a very welcome return on loan from Plymouth Argyle, of course needs no introduction. Neither really does feisty Brendan Sarpong-Wiredu, here on loan last season, and this time signed full-time from Charlton Athletic for an undisclosed fee. Actually paying hard cash for someone did come as a surprise, presumably offset by the sale of Cohen Bramall to Lincoln for a similarly undisclosed fee. However, the fact that the Addicks have insisted on not only a sell-on clause, but a rarely used buy-back clause too, suggests (a) Wiredu’s signing fee probably wasn’t too high, and (b) Charlton are protecting those finances with these clauses. The last one, which would have been a complete surprise for me were it not for a contact leaking me the news earlier yesterday, is left-back Josh Doherty on loan from Crawley. Josh was only announced once outgoing left-back Bramall was confirmed, and presumably his loan is directly related to part-time fashion model, TV and radio celeb and former left-back Mark Wright signing for Crawley on a non-contract game-by-game basis in December. We have also released seven from the academy, Ollie Kensdale, Miquel Scarlett, Sammie McLeod, Michael Fernandes, Ollie Sims, Danny Collinge and Matt Weaire, and I’m sure we all wish them the best for the future.
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