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Thread: What represents success for Saints?

  1. #1

    Default What represents success for Saints?

    Given some of Gao first comments since investing in Saints, and our recent seasons of struggle, it got me thinking - what is success for a team like ours in the modern PL?

    Clear to me (and it was at the time) that Europe and finishes of 6th and 7th were likely to be the heyday of supporting Saints as a fan in my 30s. It was a perfect storm of exceptional Academy graduates that raised what were then huge amounts of cash, very clever Scouting and successive Managers in Poch and Koeman who did unbelievable jobs.

    Now, with no additional ownership investment forthcoming then really success would be to remain a PL club and aim to have little involvement in the relegation scrap each year, whilst hoping for the odd Cup run. I don't think its realistic to expect any more.

    Again this summer it looks like we will stick to signing players in the £12-20m range and that dictates that you sign potential (which is our model) but with a fair amount of risk.

    Given the recent amounts invested by ownership of clubs like Everton, West Ham, Leicester, Wolves etc, often on proven players, I don't think we will have much chance of matching their achievements over a five year period so we are probably competing with the likes of Watford, Palace, Bournemouth, Brighton, Burnley etc who are also looking to punch above their weight each year and stay out of trouble.

    Is that fair, or do others expect more despite a general lack of spending?

  2. #2

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    The problem we have had in the last 2 to 3 season with signing players in that 12-20m bracket is that we did not have the manager/coach/coaching team to get them to improve. We had managers who could only organise and motivate what they had....as it turns out poorly...with exception to Puel.

    With Ralph all the signs are that he can improve quickly these players to see a return to the levels of 3 to 6 years ago.
    We shall see, but I do think we need to expand the upper number a bit.

  3. #3

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    Do you mean success to the owners of the club or fans?

    Clearly the sane fans amongst us would consider success a top ten finish, a good cup run, the odd European campaign whilst playing attractive football success.

    For the owners of the club I would suggest staying up whilst making the minimum investment possible is success. Carrying on our imperious reign of the net spend trophy is of course vital to this.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Turkish View Post
    Do you mean success to the owners of the club or fans?

    Clearly the sane fans amongst us would consider success a top ten finish, a good cup run, the odd European campaign whilst playing attractive football success.

    For the owners of the club I would suggest staying up whilst making the minimum investment possible is success. Carrying on our imperious reign of the net spend trophy is of course vital to this.
    I was meaning success to the fans - but take your point.

    Whilst Gao clearly isn't going to splash the cash, playing the minimum level to sustain PL football is a very dangerous ploy as we have seen. Surely for him (and therefore us) relegation would be absolutely disasterous. For him both financially and in terms of taking away the core reasons he wished to invest in the first place.

    I think the PL is splitting into 5 segments:

    1. The Powerhouse teams, currently Man City and Liverpool

    2. The rest of the top 6.

    3. The ambitious mid table clubs whonare willing to invest heavily with the (unlikely/impossible) aim to break into the top 6.

    4. The lower midtable sides looking to avoid trouble each year and milk the cash

    5. The newly promoted teams, whose sole aim is to stay up.

    We used to be in segment 3 and now are firmly in segment 4.

    Personally don't think we can go higher without ownership that will invest mote than just transfer profits.

  5. #5

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    Top 10 finish decent cup run and the odd foray into Europe

  6. #6

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    Given what Gao’s just said about there being no investment I would say just stayed up will be an achievement.

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    As above. Top 10, the odd cup run and in with a chance of winning them, and the odd venture into Europe.

    It really isn't that much to ask.

  8. #8

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    Success for Saints is making a profit, regardless of where we finish so long as we don't get relegated (as that ****s up revenue).

  9. #9

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    Top 10 finish and exciting attacking football with academy players in the squad.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusic View Post
    I was meaning success to the fans - but take your point.

    Whilst Gao clearly isn't going to splash the cash, playing the minimum level to sustain PL football is a very dangerous ploy as we have seen. Surely for him (and therefore us) relegation would be absolutely disasterous. For him both financially and in terms of taking away the core reasons he wished to invest in the first place.

    I think the PL is splitting into 5 segments:

    1. The Powerhouse teams, currently Man City and Liverpool

    2. The rest of the top 6.

    3. The ambitious mid table clubs whonare willing to invest heavily with the (unlikely/impossible) aim to break into the top 6.

    4. The lower midtable sides looking to avoid trouble each year and milk the cash

    5. The newly promoted teams, whose sole aim is to stay up.

    We used to be in segment 3 and now are firmly in segment 4.

    Personally don't think we can go higher without ownership that will invest mote than just transfer profits.
    We have never invested heavily trying to break into the top 6.

  11. #11

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    Staying in the Premier League continuously for as long we have is a considerable achievement, only Everton and the top six's current spell in the Premier League is longer than ours.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fan The Flames View Post
    We have never invested heavily trying to break into the top 6.
    We did invest quite a lot, mostly because we were able to make huge profit on a special group of academy talents.

    And we were certainly in the pack just beneath the top six and definitely aren't anymore.

    We have slipped back and the level of finance needed to get to 7th/8th is much greater than when we were in that position as the others have increased their spending to the point that teams like Wolves and WHam are spending £30+ on players.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fan The Flames View Post
    We have never invested heavily trying to break into the top 6.
    Correct - and we actually did finish sixth. Similarly Leicester won the freaking league but not because they "invested heavily", as a cursory look at their signings in the summer before will show.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusic View Post
    We did invest quite a lot, mostly because we were able to make huge profit on a special group of academy talents.

    And we were certainly in the pack just beneath the top six and definitely aren't anymore.

    We have slipped back and the level of finance needed to get to 7th/8th is much greater than when we were in that position as the others have increased their spending to the point that teams like Wolves and WHam are spending £30+ on players.
    Which season did we invest heavily to break into the top six?

  15. Default

    The summer before 14/15 we spent £81million.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saint_clark View Post
    The summer before 14/15 we spent £81million.

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    You're not supposed to look at the actual facts mate, just the bits that make us look like we don't spend. The fact that we spent more last summer than we received is irrelevant also, apparently.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saint_clark View Post
    The summer before 14/15 we spent £81million.

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    I can remember absolutely everyone on this forum completely buzzing about how we were "investing heavily to break the top six" that summer. Delirious, happy days.

  18. #18

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    I think the clubs aim is to try to improve as much as possible whilst being financially stable and self sufficient.

    I don't know why people think this means we won't spend any money, we spent like £60 million last year and according to that Echo article are looking to do the same this year even before any player sales.

    It has always been the aim of the club to this by maximising everything we can from that investment so that is unearthing bargains with good scouting, improving players with good coaching, getting the most out of players through good management, bringing through players from the youth academy and maximising what we can off the field in terms of fitness, sports science, marketing etc.

    Its the management and scouting side over recent years that has let us down, we have struggled to unearth gems or they have been poorly managed, not improved and the best has not been made of them on the pitch through poor management.

    Hopefully the management aspect has been sorted for a little while, we have a good manager who seems to so far get the most out of the squad and wants to improve players as well. If we can get the signings right, then who knows, a good season and we might be able to push for that best of the rest spot at least, or win a cup or something like that.

    Realistically we are never going to break into the top 4 unless we have an exceptional season where all the little 1% things come off, kind of like Leicester did or like we almost did when we finished 6th and were probably only a few wins away from top 4.

    I think we'd basically need a couple of signings to really hit it off, plus some of the current squad to have a really good season or Ralph improves them a lot and then everyone is playing decently and as a unit. Plus a couple of the big boys might have a poor season, you never know.

    I mean Chelsea have lost Hazard who was literally half their goals last year and have a transfer ban, Man Utd have an inexperienced manager, unhappy or seemingly unwilling players, and look unlikely to attract the real top players they want. Spurs could lose Poch and some key players like Erikkson so any of those could have a bad year to open the door for someone else.

    Top 2 looks pretty clear cut to me, but 3-6 not so much, all those clubs could have bad seasons.

    But I think most of us would be happy with safe mid table, playing some good football, some good home wins and an attempt at the clubs, basically we want to see real progress.

    And I reckon we have 2-3 years max of Ralph before he either leaves for a bigger club or we have to have shown some real progress to convince him to keep going with the project.

  19. #19

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    Top 7

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saint_clark View Post
    The summer before 14/15 we spent £81million.

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    And we sold for about 105 million so we actually invested nothing at all. But we bought players that we later sold for even more and so on and so forth. Execept for the last couple of years where we've just bought donkeys who've not grown in value.

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    The top 6 is highly likely to be the same as last season so any of the other places in the top half of the table.

  22. Default

    Success for Saints would be world class concourse catering, amazing half time entertainment, and adequate facilities for our transgender supporters

  23. #23

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    Our average position in the top flight is 12th, which matches our average home gate, so anything above that is good. But, most clubs of our size have won at least 4 major trophies in their history so we have underachieved so far. Another FA Cup or League Cup is long overdue.

  24. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Window Cleaner View Post
    And we sold for about 105 million so we actually invested nothing at all. But we bought players that we later sold for even more and so on and so forth. Execept for the last couple of years where we've just bought donkeys who've not grown in value.
    If you tally up the total amounts spent and received since we were promoted back up, we have spent far more than we received. It's a myth that we haven't invested more than we received from player sales.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nordic Saint View Post
    Our average position in the top flight is 12th, which matches our average home gate, so anything above that is good. But, most clubs of our size have won at least 4 major trophies in their history so we have underachieved so far. Another FA Cup or League Cup is long overdue.
    The last time a team outside the big six won an FA or League cup was the 2012-2013 season they have the cups sown up as much as the league these days .

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  26. #26

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    Ideal would be another run at europe, but after last season I'd be quite happy to stay mid table while beginning the process of shaking up the team

  27. Default

    I expect the club to have good seasons when they have a good Manager, the Academy produces a cluster of premier league class players, we make good signings and keep them for a while. I believe this can happen and when it does the top 6 and cups become possible. On the other hand realistically that is not possible all of the time and there will be times like the last 2 seasons when we will have to batten down the hatches and fight for survival. Mostly we will be somewhere in between.
    Investing enough to guarantee success is open to very few and clubs outside the top 6 attempting that approach still need other factors to go in their favour or they can become very unstuck indeed.

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by egg View Post
    You're not supposed to look at the actual facts mate, just the bits that make us look like we don't spend. The fact that we spent more last summer than we received is irrelevant also, apparently.
    Only because nobody wanted to buy our players and we had to loan them out. If the club had managed to sell them as planned I very much doubt we would have spent more than we sold.

  29. #29

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    PL Champions and then CL Champions, not too much to ask is it?
    Not fussed about the UEFA Super Cup though.

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    or maybe just finishing above Bournemouth.

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    I'll be happy to see a 'plus' goal difference for a change and hope we finish around eighth.

  32. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Saint_clark View Post
    If you tally up the total amounts spent and received since we were promoted back up, we have spent far more than we received. It's a myth that we haven't invested more than we received from player sales.
    That is true, however we have a lower net transfer expenditure than any other club currently in the Premier League apart from Tottenham and Norwich. In fact, of the teams that have appeared in the Premier League during that period, we have a lower net expenditure than all but 7 out of 33.

    During that time, we've received the 4th highest income from player sales (£362m) while being the 8th highest spenders (£391m).

  33. #33

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    From the Manager himself (in the BILD interview), if we do everything right we can finish 10th.

    I think that is about right, would be very tough to get higher.

    Shows how brilliant finishing 6th, 7th and even 8th a few years ago really was.

    Will be hard to ever do that again given how much finance is dictating things.

  34. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusic View Post
    From the Manager himself (in the BILD interview), if we do everything right we can finish 10th.

    I think that is about right, would be very tough to get higher.

    Shows how brilliant finishing 6th, 7th and even 8th a few years ago really was.

    Will be hard to ever do that again given how much finance is dictating things.
    I read it as if we perform as well as last season (ie while he was manager) then we would finish 10th. Would be odd to say the very best we could do is 10th, given there’s Generally not much between 7th and 10th.

  35. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danbert View Post
    Staying in the Premier League continuously for as long we have is a considerable achievement, only Everton and the top six's current spell in the Premier League is longer than ours.
    This is a great stat. The seventh longest current stay in the Premier League. Not to be sniffed at.

    I think four top eight finishes on the trot was exceptional. I do think it is credible to get back into Europe every so often, but equally it is likely we will face more disappointing seasons like the last two as well. So all in all survival alongside a cup run and every few years challenge the top seven feels good to me.

  36. #36

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    Winning something. 1976 is embedded in my brain. When is the next year that will happen? (JPT doesn't count.)

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    Half decent football, challenging for the top half. I like unearthing talent from abroad and I'll happily take the odd Moi and Gaston mixed in with the Manes and Tadics.

    What I can't stand is throwing away about 15 games a season in the last 5 minutes and making ridiculous signings like Carrillo and Osvaldo, which are doomed from day 1.

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    We obviously should be aiming for a cup win and/or European football but for a club our size, with a skint owner, just staying up is a success.

  39. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
    Half decent football, challenging for the top half. I like unearthing talent from abroad and I'll happily take the odd Moi and Gaston mixed in with the Manes and Tadics.

    What I can't stand is throwing away about 15 games a season in the last 5 minutes and making ridiculous signings like Carrillo and Osvaldo, which are doomed from day 1.
    The donkey, definitely. But Osvaldo clearly had talent and seemed an exciting signing at the time. No one predicted he'd be a complete nutter.

  40. #40

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    I genuinely had a nightmare last night about us getting relegated. The first season I had a season ticket was ‘99. I guess the measure of success you expect on the period you started going.

  41. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Forester View Post
    This is a great stat. The seventh longest current stay in the Premier League. Not to be sniffed at.

    I think four top eight finishes on the trot was exceptional. I do think it is credible to get back into Europe every so often, but equally it is likely we will face more disappointing seasons like the last two as well. So all in all survival alongside a cup run and every few years challenge the top seven feels good to me.
    Business as usual then.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Munster View Post
    The donkey, definitely. But Osvaldo clearly had talent and seemed an exciting signing at the time. No one predicted he'd be a complete nutter.
    Apart from verbally abusing two managers and punching Erik Lamela?

  43. #43

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    Decent exciting football, not that bothered about what league we are in as long as it's entertaining.

    Our league 1 campaigns were 100 times more fun that the last 2-3 seasons in the prem.

  44. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cabrone View Post
    Decent exciting football, not that bothered about what league we are in as long as it's entertaining.

    Our league 1 campaigns were 100 times more fun that the last 2-3 seasons in the prem.
    They where exciting and entertaining because we where winning most weeks bar the odd shock. It's fun being a big fish in a small pond now we are the minnow, suffering from fin rot and swim bladder, in a big pond it's not so much fun...

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  45. #45

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    Quite a few mentions of top 10 here, I think 10th would be a fantastic season.

    I think anything above 10th is almost impossible with the current squad and relative spending to others like West Ham, Leicester etc.

  46. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusic View Post
    Quite a few mentions of top 10 here, I think 10th would be a fantastic season.

    I think anything above 10th is almost impossible with the current squad and relative spending to others like West Ham, Leicester etc.
    How much have saints, West ham and Leicester spent so far this window?

  47. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by ALWAYS_SFC View Post
    How much have saints, West ham and Leicester spent so far this window?
    Saints have spent £30m on Djenepo and Adams + the deferred payment of £20m on Ings, West Ham £60m on Fornals and Haller, and Leicester £80m on Tielemans, Perez and Justin. Hope that helps.

  48. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nordic Saint View Post
    Saints have spent £30m on Djenepo and Adams + the deferred payment of £20m on Ings, West Ham £60m on Fornals and Haller, and Leicester £80m on Tielemans, Perez and Justin. Hope that helps.
    Deferred Ings, did we not pay this summer?

    And of course WH and Leicester paid in full didn't they? Okay
    Last edited by ALWAYS_SFC; 18-07-2019 at 03:37 PM.

  49. #49

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    Winning the Europa League, that's about as far a club like us can go. Would help if it was expanded to include every top division club in Europe and made straight knockout from the start. And double the size of the Champions League group stage to ensure the likes of Chelsea and Arsenal wouldn't get in our way.

  50. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusic View Post
    Quite a few mentions of top 10 here, I think 10th would be a fantastic season.

    I think anything above 10th is almost impossible with the current squad and relative spending to others like West Ham, Leicester etc.
    Top ten is asking a hell of a lot. I'd be pleased with a season where we don't look like relegation candidates.

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