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Thread: Guaranteed top half top finish four years in a row - 1st time ever in Saints history!

  1. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by doddisalegend View Post
    In the end all people remember is the league position couldn't tell you many points we had in previous seasons with out looking it up but I can usual remember where we finished in the table.
    Those that don't go to games remember league position, those that do remember the awful football.

  2. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shroppie View Post
    Be careful what you wish for.

    After a lot of fence-sitting I now hope we keep Claude for at least another season. I'm now convinced that behind the apparently dull exterior there is a good football brain.

    And for every unsubstantiated report of player fallout, there is evidence of him developing talent. I hope we keep key players: if we do, we've got the core of a very good team and I want to see what he does without injuries and with gaps resulting from lack of replacement.

    And if we do lose players, let's see how he builds his own team.

    A new manager now will mean another season of transition with risks. Yes, I would like more goals and hopefully having the right strikers playing regularly will help. As an aside, in his few minutes on Weds, JRod looked more like his old self and I'm hopeful.

    I don't buy into the mantra that we play boring football, maybe because I've been at several away games where the fluent passing has been impressive. I understand the frustration at St Mary's, but there's a danger that the atmosphere there will become toxic.

    Get behind the team on Sunday, make a lot of noise and stop believing the grass is always greener.

    Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk
    This is the crux of the matter. You have literally been watching a different team, both in personnel and style.
    Last edited by Whitey Grandad; 19-05-2017 at 12:44 PM. Reason: Speeling

  3. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by doddisalegend View Post
    I think people need to look at the bigger picture with regards to points rather than just the manager.

    Had we kept Mane, Pelle, Victor and Fonte this season would they be worth and extra 15pts between them over the course of the season?

    .
    Under Puel I don't honestly believe they would. I think we'd still have played cautious football and changed the team around even more.

    Can switch it round and say I think we'd be 10 points better off if we had a manager who'd got the best out of Tadic and Long this season. They've been dire, yet Tadic has proven himself before as a quality left winger and Long was a very good striker last season. Boufal was very good last season and although it's his first season in this league, he's never had a proper run, suffered as a result of the endless changes and ultimately been rubbish. Rodriguez has largely been rubbish, Hojbjerg turned rubbish, Clasie got ignored, Sims burst on the scene then quickly disappeared.

    Anyone showing any attacking quality is quickly rested, no one has found any consistency and attacking confidence has been shot to pieces all season. It's no coincidence that all our strikers look frustrating and isolated, all snatch at their chances.

  4. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by adriansfc View Post
    Under Puel I don't honestly believe they would. I think we'd still have played cautious football and changed the team around even more.

    Can switch it round and say I think we'd be 10 points better off if we had a manager who'd got the best out of Tadic and Long this season. They've been dire, yet Tadic has proven himself before as a quality left winger and Long was a very good striker last season. Boufal was very good last season and although it's his first season in this league, he's never had a proper run, suffered as a result of the endless changes and ultimately been rubbish. Rodriguez has largely been rubbish, Hojbjerg turned rubbish, Clasie got ignored, Sims burst on the scene then quickly disappeared.

    Anyone showing any attacking quality is quickly rested, no one has found any consistency and attacking confidence has been shot to pieces all season. It's no coincidence that all our strikers look frustrating and isolated, all snatch at their chances.
    I dread to think he bad pelle would look with Puel with the rest of the team 30 yards from him

  5. #55

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    just as well we are finishing like this. The club have set the objective (for next season) of qualifying for Europe

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    Quote Originally Posted by simo View Post
    What does the trophy and medals look like ?
    I think they're the same as when Poch finished 8th and everybody wet themselves over it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  7. #57

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    hiw can we ever have stability if we change the manager every season. Puel needs time to build and you start by not losing first and then go from there.
    I cant believe how fans feel we played wonderful football every/most games for the previous 2 seasons. There was a lot of dull possession football then as well.

  8. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saint86 View Post
    And still, no home league wins this year, no goal at home for nearly 7 hours, and our worst league performance for 4 years.

    Puel is a dead man walking. But says a lot about the club that even after a bad season, we are still in a position to achieve 4 consecutive top ten finishes. Imagine if we had a manager who knew how to attack, break down teams, and score goals!!
    Fake News Alert, we have won at least two home games this year that I remembered in the two minutes since I thought "what kind of bellend puts in a post like that"

  9. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by Depressed of Shirley View Post
    Fake News Alert, we have won at least two home games this year that I remembered in the two minutes since I thought "what kind of bellend puts in a post like that"
    For home league wins in 2017, Palace and Leicester spring to mind.

  10. #60

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    Puel has built from the back this season, and if you bear in mind that VVD has been out half the season it's remarkable how we've kept the joint 3rd most clean sheets in the league. All we need is a clinical goalscorer and we will be challenging top 6 again - we create the chances but can't finish it off. It will make a massive difference have Gabbiadini and Austin fully fit at the start of next season, im all up for Puel staying. We've played a shed load more games this season as well with the Europa League and Cup run so finishing 8th (all be it on a lower points total) isn't a bad finish considering everything

  11. #61

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    Quote Originally Posted by warwicksaint View Post
    Puel has built from the back this season, and if you bear in mind that VVD has been out half the season it's remarkable how we've kept the joint 3rd most clean sheets in the league. All we need is a clinical goalscorer and we will be challenging top 6 again - we create the chances but can't finish it off. It will make a massive difference have Gabbiadini and Austin fully fit at the start of next season, im all up for Puel staying. We've played a shed load more games this season as well with the Europa League and Cup run so finishing 8th (all be it on a lower points total) isn't a bad finish considering everything
    Funny, I was just thinking about this. Is building from the back the best way to go in terms of tactics & strategy? Rather than having a system and then trying to find the best striker for that system, perhaps we should work the other way. Decide who is playing up top, and vary your tactics around it. Gabbiadini, Austin and Long all have very obvious strengths, but also obvious weaknesses, and each player is very different from the others. Our game should be noticeably different depending on which forward is playing, but it isn't. I think that's a flaw.

  12. #62

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    Quote Originally Posted by mrfahaji View Post
    Funny, I was just thinking about this. Is building from the back the best way to go in terms of tactics & strategy? Rather than having a system and then trying to find the best striker for that system, perhaps we should work the other way. Decide who is playing up top, and vary your tactics around it. Gabbiadini, Austin and Long all have very obvious strengths, but also obvious weaknesses, and each player is very different from the others. Our game should be noticeably different depending on which forward is playing, but it isn't. I think that's a flaw.
    Agreed they all have different strengths and weaknesses but any good team is built on the foundations of a solid defence - which he has achieved. He can't win. If we were scoring with ease but conceding just as many he'd be axed as the fans would be complaining. Agreed we can be boring but you can't deny we've become very hard to break down and beat easily. Just need to score some now! I think we need consistency as the players never seem to get more than 2 games starting. JRod for example scored and assisted against M'boro but was then dropped for the next game, which in my mind makes no sense as surely strikers thrive off confidence?! A few little tweaks from Puel and i believe we have a strong looking side for next year with the correct investment in the summer.

  13. #63

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    Quote Originally Posted by saintadam View Post
    2013/2014 : 56 points.
    2014/2015: 60 points.
    2015/2016 63 points.
    2016/2017: 46-4X?.

    I'm not gonna applaud that. Keeping thing "as is" could be disastrous. Im sure the club will take actions like Ralph has indicated.
    Top half finish, Without our natural goal scorer for half a season, our record signing for a time after he signed and in January, our left back for a month and our best central defender for months. Without the injuries to key players, I reckon we'd have more points on the board. I know every club has injuries but to have them to such key players is harsh. With the top 6 only getting stronger, and the Everton wannabes pushing for glory, 8th is probably the best we can hope to finish from now on in anyway unless one of those big clubs have a bad season. Yes, it would be nice to play more entertaining, attacking football, but in terms of league placing we're not far off the ceiling, and have done it with a weaker-than-possible side because of those injuries. If Puel goes, he goes - I won't be fussed either way - but I'd be surprised if another manager could achieve a higher placed finish with the injuries we've had.

    Going forward, the club has to decide whether that top 6/7 is breakable, something only a takeover and major investment can achieve.

  14. #64

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vancouver Saint View Post
    Not sure you're serious, but I know some are. As a lifelong Saints fan I'm saddened by the Club's Management leaving Puel hanging on a thread until the season is over. Certainly less than the vote of confidence I'd expect if I'd made sacrifices to join the club. Despite some pretty bad luck with injuries to key players and terrible scheduling (surprised no-one has commented on this - our Christmas schedule and delayed 'catch-up' games have done us no favours) we're in 8th place and should stay there. If we learned how to score penalties again (got to be some coaching focus on that) we'd already have 8th place secured.

    Sure, I have questions about the style of football we play. It's frustratingly boring and turgid at times. Four 0-0's in a row at home is not acceptable. Lowest goal tally, home points etc. But then we've also seen some terrific games that give you pause for thought that we can actually play attractive attacking football - the League Cup Final being top of mind.

    You can't lose your best player and your top scorer and not expect to have some difficulties. I've not heard him use this as an excuse ever - he's got on with what he's got.

    Puel deserves an opportunity to learn the PL for a season (Man Utd did it with...who was it...oh yes, Alex Ferguson...he did okay in the end).

    He needs a clear brief; we are an attacking team...style is just as important as points, it's not one or the other.

    I suspect the cageiness from Ralph and Les is because Puel himself hasn't decided if he likes it here or not - I wouldn't blame him for thinking he was sold a pup (we're not a selling club any more - ha ha) and that he's got a whingeing bunch of ingrates in the stands.
    Quote Originally Posted by doddisalegend View Post
    I think people need to look at the bigger picture with regards to points rather than just the manager.

    Had we kept Mane, Pelle, Victor and Fonte this season would they be worth and extra 15pts between them over the course of the season?

    European football more often than not has an impact on English teams ( especially mid sized PL teams) league performances.

    Losing a player of VVD quality and your top scorer to injury for half a season each is also going to cost you points.

    We actually had a proper cup run this season to more games and another distraction frim the league

    The big teams have also raised their game this season some have improved and the others are certainly no worse than last season.

    When you factor in these things added to the poor quality of lasts summers transfer a drop in points is hardly surprising

    I'm not saying the manager has got everything right this season but I think he has a tougher job than many people give him credit for.
    Good posts.

    At the start of the season the majority predicted us to finish 10th-12th - we will at least make the top end of that and quite possibly surpass it.

    At the start of the season many of us were calling for a new striker to be brought in; saying it was a huge mistake to rely on Austin and JRod to remain injury free - as so it was proved.

    It was a travesty that our star signing was guaranteed to be crocked for half the season )and has then been a bit of a disappointed, but has displayed undoubted ability).

    The we had the CB farce: selling Fonte without a replacement onboard and the subsequent injury to VvD.

    And that is without going into the fixture congestion.

    I agree, the home could and should be better. However, Puel wasn't to blame for either Tadic's or Gabbiadini's penalties being saved. Had they both gone in we would have 2 more wins and 4 more points on the board.

    I honestly feel we need some stability. Keep all the major players and the manager, and add more quality to the squad. If West Ham were to sack their manager after finishing 8th and reaching a cup-final, whilst being impeded by poor transfer decisions and injuries to key players, almost everybody on this forum would be extracting the urine from their deluded fans!

  15. #65

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    Quote Originally Posted by RobM View Post
    If we were in exactly the same position, with exactly the same points, with exactly the same Europa League and Cup run, but played more beautiful, attacking football, nobody would be calling for Puel to go.

    This level of top-flight consistency IS a big deal for a club of our size, who not so long ago were fearful of going out of business. When we were promoted the one thing we all called for was establishing ourselves in the top flight, which we've done. No sane person really expected us to continue to improve our league position every single year without fail, as there are constraints that we and most other clubs cannot overcome, even with unlimited funds, due to the rules of the league.

    But... this is Saints, our fanbase have been brought up on drama and need something to get worked up about, so if there isn't anything, we'll go and find it. We're upset about a top-10 finish in the Premier League.
    Oh dear, no ambition and low esteme ...
    I'd prefer to think big personally ...

  16. #66

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    Chelsea
    Spurs
    City
    Liverpool
    Arsenal
    United
    Everton
    Which of the listed teams do we think Saints should have finished above?
    Agreed some of the football has been dull to watch at times but, some have been brilliant. Talking to fans of other clubs most say how they love watching Saints.
    I think only two other clubs have had more clean sheets than Saints so it seems putting the ball in the net is our problem this season. Can't blame the manager when your goal scorers aren't taking the many chances which we have giving to them!

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    Quote Originally Posted by saintquin View Post
    Chelsea
    Spurs
    City
    Liverpool
    Arsenal
    United
    Everton
    Which of the listed teams do we think Saints should have finished above?
    Agreed some of the football has been dull to watch at times but, some have been brilliant. Talking to fans of other clubs most say how they love watching Saints.
    I think only two other clubs have had more clean sheets than Saints so it seems putting the ball in the net is our problem this season. Can't blame the manager when your goal scorers aren't taking the many chances which we have giving to them!
    Big ask to finish above any of them - unless one or more of them has a truly dire season. However, to be 15 points behind 7th and 40 points off top might be thought a bit poor.

    The fact that our league position this season might be a respectable 8th does disguise that a yawning chasm has opened to the top 6 or 7. A chasm it looked like we are closing in last 2 years, but is now huger than ever.

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