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Posts posted by NewYorkSaint

  1. So... it's been a common pattern since the start of the season. We go all out first half with our high-press game and have often stunned teams into conceding.  

    But we always pay a price. The team isn't able to sustain it over 90 minutes.  So it's no accident that we're among the best for first half goals, and worst for second half.

    This is core to Ralph's strategy. And in a league where many teams have vastly more to spend on their players, you can make a strong case for it. Blitz them. Surprise them. Take a lead. And then fight like hell to maintain it.  

    It worked pretty great for the first third of the season.

    I worry that two things have happened.

    1) Teams have watched us and started to figure out how better to play around the press.

    2) We've started to pay an additional cost beyond second half exhaustion... namely, overall physical exhaustion.  Our injury rate and - judging from today - overall physical vitality have taken a hit.

    Of course, it's not helped by numerous 'bad luck' moments such as key refereeing decisions and the bad momentum brought on by losses leading to low morale in a cycle.


    What to do? 

    Dial back a bit the all-out first half blitz?  

    I think there may be a case for it.


    I remain huge Ralph supporter. He'll figure this out. But it's a giant challenge at this point.

    • Like 1
  2. 26 minutes ago, SuperSAINT said:

    But can they adequately fund that idea? 

    Yes, I believe they can. All the money is in place for current offer. And longer term they have access to further funding sources, both private and public. 

  3. I've spoken with DaGrosa several times and I've concluded he's actually a really smart investor with a compelling plan for Southampton's future.  The fundamental problem clubs of our size have is how to compete against much deeper pocketed owners.  DaGrosa's plan finds a way to build long-term value for the club via a network of academies, and satellite clubs around the world.  Instead of only buying and selling players, we develop them, and at a scale few other clubs can match. It's ingenious, building on Southampton's academy reputation, and seeking to turn that into a global brand. But it would also require a level of financial discipline to get there.  Covid has forced tough financial times on every club, and it's not unexpected that things have taken a turn for the worse since last summer when the outline of this deal was put into place. Speaking personally, I really hope Gao can find a way to come back to the table and get this done. I think it's probably the best outcome for everyone.   

    • Like 1
    • Confused 1
  4. Without defending the tackle one iota, I do think the red card rule is ridiculous. One moment of madness by one kid, and the entire game is ruined as a spectacle... for both teams.  There are so many better ways to deal with this. Send off the player, and ban him for three games, fine the club, whatever...  but allow a substitute so the game can be 11 v 11.  Or allow a substitute after 10 mins.  No need to ruin the game.     I've held this view when red cards have been in our favor. It's one thing when it's the end of the game. But in the first few mins...   makes no sense. I hope, one day, they fix this.

  5. I don't think there's been a game this season where we haven't been strong in the first half. Even against Spurs.  Our high press is terrifying for so many teams. But we burn a lot of energy. Second half is usually another story. Here's hoping we can find another goal....

  6. 11 minutes ago, adrian lord said:

    Saints taters bingo


    1. “Nine-nil”       X
    2. “Austrian Klopp”. 
    3. “Like to press...” X
    4. "Famed Academy"
    5. “This is one for Ward-Prowse” X
    6. “Excellent first half”
    7. “Unlucky not to go in more than one nil up”
    8. “ Southampton haven’t got going since the break“
    9. "The equaliser was coming"
    10. “Saints struggling since going behind“
    11. “Ralph Hassenhutl is about to bring on Shane Long as Saints try to chase the game“


    Brilliant.   My number 12.  "Southampton's back-line caught napping there from the free kick..."


    • Like 1
  7. It's really exciting when a player who's seen mixed performances starts to turn into a superstar.  Thought Vestergaard was so strong today. That header. Wow. That's going to put a shudder through a lot of defenses.  It wasn't that long ago that default opinion on here was 'tall good-hearted guy, but clumsy, can't jump."  Today he showed not just a sensational goal, but some great passing and pretty much rock solid at the back.  Him, Romeu, JWP and Adams (and maybe McCarthy and Walker-Peters too) have really been the story of the season.  Our own loyal boys just getting better, step by step.

    • Like 1
  8. And....  our season is underway.  Excellent, excellent!

    Looks like Vestergaard is capable of making a real difference in defense. And Romeo... what a start to the season he's had. He and JWP are a formidable ball-winning engine. With possibly two great players about to join, it could be a wonderful year.

  9. Great half.  Would love to see an Adams brace in the second half.  I'm convinced he's a truly great player who's suffered from a combo of bad luck (first) leading to slightly damaged confidence.  But even then he's a great team player. Is part of pretty much every attack. Once he  gets going... look out.

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