|Brighton and Hove Albion 2 v 2 Southampton|
Barclays Premier League
Sunday, 24th April 2022 Kick-off 14:00
Southampton At Brighton The Preview
Saturday, 23rd Apr 2022 18:06
Saints blew it at Burnley, but they are a better team than that performance suggests and Ralph Hasenhuttl will be looking for his team to show that, by stopping them coasting in the final month of the season and getting a few more points under their belt.
The truth of the matter is that Saints have a team and have performed this season to exactly the position they lie in the League at the moment in terms of resources etc, that means that although at times they will be able to win games that they are not expected to, but in others like Burnley, they will get turned over.
They are not alone is that respect, some like Brentford are still playing on the adrenalin of their first season in the Premier League, but most in mid table are struggling to raise themselves with nothing to play for now except pride and the off place or two in the table.
So Ralph Hasenhuttl's job is to try and get some of the underperformers back to their best.
Armando Broja had a purple patch in the middle of the season, but truth is he has not scored in the Premier League in 2 1/2 months a period encompassing 9 games, but more to the point, he hasn't looked like scoring in most of them.
Che Adams must be frustrated, yes he missed a couple at Burnley, but at least he was getting in goalscoring positions, Broja has looked lost, he is a good player, but he needs experience and is not the man to play up front on his own.
Stuart Armstrong is running into blind alleys and Elyounoussi rarely doing much where it matters.
Some will get on the backs of certain players, but the likes of Yan Valery and Nathan Redmond put in effort on Thursday and weren't the worst players on the pitch, but they will get stick.
So we know that this season is done, there will be no late season excitement, just cruising to the finish line.
But that should not lead to the ranting that I heard at Burnley from some of our fans, things are changing, we need to look to next season now.
But first there is the little matter of finishing ahead of Brighton and in this respect the game on Sunday is the South Coast cup final, the winner of this game will surely finish above the loser come the end of the season.
All we want to see in this game is our best team put in a decent performance , from this point of view, bring back Elyounoussi and Tino Livramento into a back four, bring back Che Adams in attack and personally I would pair him with a forward who will be here next season and has shown a willingness to put in a shift in Adam Armstrong.
Bring back Nathan Redmond in place of Moi Elyounoussi and dare I say it play Ibrahima Diallo instead of Stuart Armstrong.
Livramento Salisu, Bednarek, Walker Peters
Diallo, JWP, Romeu, Redmond
A Armstrong, Adams
That is a team that will play for the shirt and perhaps get the win that will see us still chasing a decent final placing.
Photo: Action Images
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When Monday Comes #37 by wessex_exile
When Saturday Comes and we reach the end of a topsy-turvy season, much of which hasn’t been that much fun if I’m honest, though latterly considerably improved under Wayne Brown. If I can, I always like to do the first and last game of the season, but sadly a trip to Hartlepool just wasn’t on the cards, not if I actually wanted to get home again tonight, so I had to console myself with a pretty enjoyable trip to the JobServe last weekend – not quite the victory the U’s deserved over Walsall, but a great day out anyway. I know it’ll be too late for the Player of the Year awards, but wouldn’t it be nice to see a Freddie Sears hat-trick this afternoon to round off the season.
When Saturday Comes #36 by wessex_exile
When Saturday Comes tomorrow, and I will be on a train heading over to God’s own county for my last U’s game of the season. That should have been last Friday’s trip to the Principality, but as posted elsewhere I was more than happy to be pre-booked to dog-sit Emma’s collie Reggie that night and had to be content with one of Nadine’s ‘downstreams’ on iFollow. Given both the performance and the result, whilst I was sorry to miss it in person, I was more than happy with how Friday night turned out in the end. Tomorrow will be a gathering of the clans for us, with at the last count at least 8, possibly more, of the family gathering for the match. Ironically, I’ll see them all again on Bank Holiday Monday for a family birthday, but I’ll be driving over for that one.
When Saturday Comes #35 by wessex_exile
When Saturday Comes and the U’s have already given us a fantastic start to the weekend, with a stirring and well-deserved 2-1 victory at promotion-chasing Newport County. Yes, the Exiles had lost the previous three at home and are looking like they are going to bottle their chance for the play-offs, and yes with the U’s now safe technically we had little to play for, but don’t take anything away from this performance. If Wayne Brown is still being ‘interviewed’ for the full-time role as Colchester United manager, then last night was the equivalent of having an excellent incisive question of your own lined up for the interview panel.
When Saturday Comes #34 by wessex_exile
When Saturday Comes and our Easter Bank Holiday programme is already underway, following a dismal 2-0 defeat at St James’ Park yesterday. It’s not so much the result that galls, in truth deep down I suspect we all thought it was going to be a difficult trip to get anything out of, it was the manner of that defeat. To say the U’s were lacklustre is a massive understatement – and it wasn’t as if it was down to Exeter City simply outplaying us, I didn’t think they were all that to be honest. I can cope with defeat, heaven knows the U’s have given me enough practice in recent years, but to go down without a whimper, relying on Man of the Match Sham to keep it from becoming a cricket score against an average Exeter City, was just dreadful.
When Saturday Comes #33 by wessex_exile
When Saturday Comes and there was a time, not too long ago, when today’s game against the charmless Steve Evans and Stevenage was looking like it might be a relegation 6-pointer. Whilst we’re not out of the woods quite yet, back-to-back victories over Tranmere Rovers and Harrogate mean we go into this game knowing even if we were to slip up against Stevenage, we’ll still be 8pts plus goal difference ahead of them, and only five games left to play. Still, let’s not dwell on negatives, because three wins on the bounce will be the confidence-booster we’ll need ahead of the tough trip on Good Friday to St James’ Park.
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