Saints V Tranmere The Verdict
Sunday, 10th Oct 2010 10:29
Southampton Are Back ! The best performance of the season so far.
Whilst some would say that the win at Bristol Rovers was a better win, this was perhaps the best all round performance as Saints dominated the game from beginning to end, never allowing a Rovers side who had clearly come to shut up shop and then see what they could snatch a sniff of a goal.
The key player was Richard Chaplow who transformed the midfield, previuosly we have looked too pedestrian, but Chaplow was at the heart of a pass and move system with plenty of one touch football, Nigel Adkins has a problem when Morgan Schneiderlin returns and it cant be Chaplow who makes way for him.
But even with a 9/10 performance Chaplow was probably not man of the match, that went to Guly, who looked class alongside Lambert up front, quite simply he was strong, full of pace and linked well between midfield, crowning his performance with a run to the byeline and a perfect pull back for Adam Lallana to score the second.
The only real disapointment for Saints supporters was that there were only two goals, it could of and should of have been more, with 9 shots on target and 8 off, but the Tranmere keeper had a decent game and made sure his team werent blasted away.
Another plus point was Rickie Lamberts first goal of the season from open play and this was his best game of the season, he looked sharper and fitter than he has done so hopefully he can keep firing on all cylinders.
Biggest surprise was the appearance of Lee Barnard whose hand injury didnt seem to be as serious as reported and he seemed eager to show that he was ready to get in on the act with Guly showing Nigel Adkins that he doesnt need to look outside the club for a striker.
One small surprise was that Nick Bignall didnt get even a few minutes on the pitch, Lee Holmes came of for Lallana in the 86th minute with the game well won, surely it would nave been better to give Bignall a quick piece of the action to run the rule over him, with Schneiderlin back next week at Huddersfield its difficult to see Bignall even getting on the bench for that game so with Barnard fit and Guly blossoming it might be that the Reading loanee doesnt see any time on the pitch as a Saints player.
Sadly thought the attendance was not great, 19,293 was less than last seasons corresponding fixture, with the cheap ticket offers you would have hoped that the crowd would have at least topped 20k, taking off the away totals slightly less than 19,000 Saints fans were in attendance, last week against Bournemouth the same adjusted figure was 23,000, where were those missing 4,000 Saints fans ?
Photo: Action Images
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