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Struggling to get excited by our league campaign


bender

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There's a sizeable gap between us and 10th and we're too good to go down a few places and dragged into a relegation battle.

 

Then you look up and fair enough 8th is within reach. But for me the top seven is taken by the 2 x Manchester teams, 2 x Merseyside teams and 3 x London teams.

 

Looking at our upcoming fixtures, maybe we can launch an assault on that top 7 but its a big maybe and I really hope we focus on the cup.

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It's encouraging, but dull.

 

To stay up - reasonably comfortably - in our first season back in the premier league was good, the next leap is to secure a top half finish.

 

I'm still agnostic as to whether we will really ever have the resources to seriously aim for the top four.

 

All that points to a need (and ability) to take the Cups more seriously.

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When was the last time you supported a Saints team who you felt could possibly 'get something' from every single match in the top division? For me its been 30ish years. yes we were in the top flight for 27 years but for most of them we all had our calculators out by Xmas and would pray there were 3 teams more carp than us in the division.

 

There was a stat (somewhere on saintsforever) that listed matches won in trhe preceeding 20 years for every club in the football league and we were in the bottom 5, presumably as we had spent all that time in the top division and f;lirted with relegation for most of it.

 

Not really sure what you were hoping for, this is only our second season back up, a lot of our squad played in league 1/Champ.

 

I am probably alone but I'm enjoying this season very much

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Watched Saturday's game on a stream and the first 60 minutes were as dull as ditchwater. Welcome to the Premier League mid-table twilight zone, it's probably there every season for two or three teams it's just that it's been a long time since we've been involved in mid-table mediocrity, especially this 'early' in the season, also see the last 6-8 games last season.

 

Fortunately we've got most of the top 8 still to play and they should all be reasonable games, the test will be how much we are prepared to put into games like next week where the bottom 6 or 7 will be giving it their all. The table can turn round quickly but it's not beyond the realms that we could stay in 9th for the remainder of the season!

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We're only just over halfway through the season, so there is plenty of time for things to change. Even those top teams above us could fall a few places. What would happen to Liverpool if Suarez was out injured until the end of the season? United aren't anywhere near the force they were without Van Persie. Spurs are catchable. We are now almost back to full strength and have a decent run of fixtures coming up. After them, we play some of those top teams and can beat any of them on our day. I see no reason why we couldn't move up the table a couple of places at least.

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The recent promotion seasons were, if I'm honest, far more enjoyable, particularly the awaydays.

 

Better fans all round. Winning loads, terraces (P'boro fondly remembered)

 

However I would not want us relegated as that would likely end our bankrolling by the Leibherrs, and then what?

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Unlikely we will make a European spot now and we won't get relegated, we may aswell concentrate on the FA cup. Rest the big guns at Sunderland and save them for Yeovil next Saturday.

 

Agree with this. The league will most likely be fairly dull now with little to play for. I want a cup run.

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Amusing isn't it. A few weeks back when people said that a midtable finish between 8th and 10th was highly likely where we would finish and for this reason we should take the league cup seriously and play a strong team at Sunderland we were shouted down. This was preposterious. We would get injuries and we need to concentrate on the league, afterall it was champions league or nothing. So i'm not sure why people are moaning now, we could be looking forward to a semi final second leg at Old Trafford and being 90 minutes from Wembley, instead we are looking forward to a crucial 9th place 6 pointer when we host Stoke in a few weeks time. People wanted champions league or nothing and that's what they have.

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Amusing isn't it. A few weeks back when people said that a midtable finish between 8th and 10th was highly likely where we would finish and for this reason we should take the league cup seriously and play a strong team at Sunderland we were shouted down. This was preposterious. We would get injuries and we need to concentrate on the league, afterall it was champions league or nothing. So i'm not sure why people are moaning now, we could be looking forward to a semi final second leg at Old Trafford and being 90 minutes from Wembley, instead we are looking forward to a crucial 9th place 6 pointer when we host Stoke in a few weeks time. People wanted champions league or nothing and that's what they have.

 

Well no, there is the FA cup still.

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I really hope the club is more ambitious than much of the sentiment here and think it is.

 

Ambition hasn't got much to do with it. In the past 10 years every year the three or four automatic CL places have been occupied by the same five clubs, with just one exception for Spurs in 2011. Dreaming a bit harder wont change that, only hundreds of millions.

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Amusing isn't it. A few weeks back when people said that a midtable finish between 8th and 10th was highly likely where we would finish and for this reason we should take the league cup seriously and play a strong team at Sunderland we were shouted down. This was preposterious. We would get injuries and we need to concentrate on the league, afterall it was champions league or nothing. So i'm not sure why people are moaning now, we could be looking forward to a semi final second leg at Old Trafford and being 90 minutes from Wembley, instead we are looking forward to a crucial 9th place 6 pointer when we host Stoke in a few weeks time. People wanted champions league or nothing and that's what they have.

 

No guarantee we would have beaten Chelsea as Mouurinho knows how to play against our tactics...

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Amusing isn't it. A few weeks back when people said that a midtable finish between 8th and 10th was highly likely where we would finish and for this reason we should take the league cup seriously and play a strong team at Sunderland we were shouted down. This was preposterious. We would get injuries and we need to concentrate on the league, afterall it was champions league or nothing. So i'm not sure why people are moaning now, we could be looking forward to a semi final second leg at Old Trafford and being 90 minutes from Wembley, instead we are looking forward to a crucial 9th place 6 pointer when we host Stoke in a few weeks time. People wanted champions league or nothing and that's what they have.

 

you dont give it up do you? :yawn:

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Agree with the sentiments of the OP. As impressive as Saints have been since coming back up to the PL, it seems to me we are fast reaching the limits of the glass ceiling. We've been one of the highest spenders in two summer transfer windows, so our growth has been very impressive, but making up ground just to challenge for 6th or 7th is going to be just as big a leap. The cup really is our best chance of success in the short term so I hope that becomes a priority, we're quite obviously not going down so I'd hope we have a real crack at it.

 

This PL twilight zone, as somebody above penned it, is a very apt phrase.

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Not sure why that is funny. Down the pub most of my friends and acquaintances think this is a sensible approach. Chance to win something and get to Europe through the cup route.

 

Ummmm ..... No smileys to show that you are joking .... please tell me that you are joking.

 

You do realise we are playing Yeovil not Juventus a week later?

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When was the last time you supported a Saints team who you felt could possibly 'get something' from every single match in the top division? For me its been 30ish years. yes we were in the top flight for 27 years but for most of them we all had our calculators out by Xmas and would pray there were 3 teams more carp than us in the division.

 

There was a stat (somewhere on saintsforever) that listed matches won in trhe preceeding 20 years for every club in the football league and we were in the bottom 5, presumably as we had spent all that time in the top division and f;lirted with relegation for most of it.

 

Not really sure what you were hoping for, this is only our second season back up, a lot of our squad played in league 1/Champ.

 

I am probably alone but I'm enjoying this season very much

 

Rest assured, you're not alone :)

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2nd season Syndrome has always been a factor through the years, Reading did the not being able to cut the mustard last year at first time of asking (which has followed history), West Ham surprisingly you could have seen them consolidate this year, but then their negative style of play that seems fit for a division between the Championship and Premiership looks like they could be the sufferer of second season syndrome.

We have pushed on and are learning some lessons, our recent wobble has stuck us on an Island where 8th is closer than 10th. With the resources at our our disposal our journey to the top league seemed pretty easy, so appearing to just be bobbing around is probably seen as being dull after the adventures of previous years.

If Ramirez and Osvaldo had made the same impact as quickly as Lovren and Wanyama then we would more than likely be riding a little higher and right in the mix.

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This PL twilight zone, as somebody above penned it, is a very apt phrase.

 

i don't get that at all! Isn't the twilight zone a tv show where weird things happen? Are we having weird things happen? Unless you mean like Edward Cullen cos we're out of the sunlight, but then how do you explain the werewolfs?

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this was going to happen,sorry to put a downer on it but I preferred the championship and league one,especially the away days

now its just mediocrity of midtable and the six big clubs fighting out for those overhyped cl spots,

all we can expect,if we put out our full strength squad,is a good cup run

unless saints pump in hundred of millions,and then theres still no guarantee,we will not break into the top six

still,this is what everyone wants,the promised land of the premiership

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Just me that really enjoys the football in the Premier League regardless of where we are in the table? The loss to Chelsea hurt just as much as any one of last season's which made us look favourites for relegation.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

No, yuo are not alone... the majority of balanced fans would be delighted to watch our Premier league campaign unfold whereever we finish; and its not as if we are stagnating in mid league for years is it.

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Its all relative.

 

If we'd spent most of this season 17th - 13th and been on a good run to get to 9th you'd feel a bit different.

 

I don't envy those teams s******* themselves looking over their shoulders near the bottom - to have no pressure or fear of relegation in our 2nd season

and be inside the top 10, I think is good progress going into next season.

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Ummmm ..... No smileys to show that you are joking .... please tell me that you are joking.

 

You do realise we are playing Yeovil not Juventus a week later?

 

It's a mindset. We should put out strong teams and prioritise the cup IMO. When we got knocked out of a cup by Leeds or Sunderland this year we would have expected to win them.

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Agree with the sentiments of the OP. As impressive as Saints have been since coming back up to the PL, it seems to me we are fast reaching the limits of the glass ceiling. We've been one of the highest spenders in two summer transfer windows, so our growth has been very impressive, but making up ground just to challenge for 6th or 7th is going to be just as big a leap. The cup really is our best chance of success in the short term so I hope that becomes a priority, we're quite obviously not going down so I'd hope we have a real crack at it.

 

This PL twilight zone, as somebody above penned it, is a very apt phrase.

 

Exactly. Yet to some a comment like that is worthy of ridicule. Utterly bizarre.

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I'm just enjoying the football for once without biting my nails about the result. This is the best football I've ever seen at St mary's and if the price to pay is a 'boring' league campaign then bring it on.

 

I don't really care about the fact it may be boring. I just want us to prioritise the cup once it's clear we won't be going down or getting into Europe.

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I enjoyed being a top team in div 1, absolutely delighted with nearly winning the Championship in our first season. At the start of last season the anticipation that we should win most games had gone and our first ten games were a reality check. Then we got to grips with it and ground out enough performances to stay up. This season I hoped we would have a better start and keep out of the dog fight which would give us the breathing space to improve the team further.

 

I have been absolutely delighted with this season even though the depth of the squad has been exposed by the last ten matches. The two signings from Italy have yet to establish themselves but have shown signs of coming to terms with Premier and the way we play. Especially Chambers with Shaw established and JWP followed by Gallagher and Reed with more to come we have the enjoyment of seeing our own boys coming through. I love the way we are trying to play and although the surprise factor has gone I'm looking forward to us adapting to counter tactics as I am sure we will.

 

All things being equal we have moved back into the level of expectation of being able to get something out of every match which is a major advance. I would like to think we could move up a bit more. After all every place is worth a lot of money. As for the cups I go along with the way the club is handling things. Sadly the cups no longer attract the fans despite being heavily discounted, even though I go to the matches. It's all very well expecting the club to go for the cups but a less than half full stadium isn't showing interest. I think the Europa cup is second rate and not worth the hassle. Swansea are suffering from playing in it and I'm sure their PL position has suffered as a result which would wipe out any possible profit from the Europa.

 

I'm looking forward to the rest of the season and improving the team's quality again in the summer

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Im loving the fact that we are the ninth best team in England. Proud that we are a Top 10 Premier League club. Very happy we've got 30 points so far and can watch all the others bite their nails worrying about relegation. Bring on Liverpool and Arsenal at home along with all the rest, what is there not to be excited about? Some people are never happy, sod League 1, yes it was exciting and good away days but it was for me humiliating for our club to be in that League. Sit back and enjoy the ride!!

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Our style of football is pretty dull of late, so that doesnt help either - what’s happened to the high press by the way?

 

8th place was the minimum expectation for mopo so I can understand why he has ditched the league cup (zero incentive for him)

 

get the feeling that NC has asked for an FA cup run too, so hopefully mopo will deliver

 

Id love a trip to Wembley and that would make up for what’s largely been a dull(ish) season so far.

 

Roll on the world cup if all else fails :)

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I think the Europa cup is second rate and not worth the hassle. Swansea are suffering from playing in it and I'm sure their PL position has suffered as a result which would wipe out any possible profit from the Europa.

 

I agree except that the Europe Cup brings in a lot of international experience which is valuable if you are ever aiming to become a Champions' League team. Players also need to adapt to playing twice weekly, the whole club has to plan and prepare for that, including squad depth.

 

That and it's a benchmark - it would be nice to hit it.

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Good choice of topic and it's probably how many of us feel. I didn't go down there on Saturday partly for that very reason that it all seems to have petered out a bit this season. Mid-table mediocrity has become the reality and a bit like the old mid-life crises, our whole approach seems to have become a bit aimless. A few years of success and always on the up-and-up has maybe spoiled us, so if we are not challenging at the top and not under any immediate threat from the bottom, finishing higher or lower than the North London rioters or the always grumbling Geordies does not seem much of an objective to keep us on our toes.

 

We are where we are and we are what we have become, nothing is suddenly going to improve. Hey ho, but it is PL football, Jim but not as we would have liked it to be.

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Well Adrian, I'm pretty sure the opposite of prioritising the cups is what we did for the League Cup. We openly had a priority in that competition of playing second string players and hoping that would be enough to progress as far as possible. Thankfully our approach to the FA Cup seems rather more focused on putting out a strong team, I hope it continues (and I feel it will).

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Prioritize? I just don't see it. We don't have a long European campaign or a 46 game promotion season, or even a long league cup run. We're talking managing an extra handful of cup matches with 38 league games. Squads are bigger and fitter now, so why has it become so fashionable to suggest it's so impossible to manage both? Wigan didn't go down because of the cup, they went down because they weren't good enough. Winning breeds confidence and who is to say Wigan didn't fight relegation a little better with their cup run than they would have otherwise?

 

I want to see Saints going all out in every match for the rest of the season. Even if we can only be 8th or 9th, I want to see us as close in points to 6th/7th as possible, rather than the usual huge gap down.

 

Because it was annoying to see us go out in the league cup the last couple of seasons because we played a load of rubbish players. I want to see the majority of first team players playing in the cup and it looks like that's what we will do based on rickie's comments and the lineup from the last round.

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Well Adrian, I'm pretty sure the opposite of prioritising the cups is what we did for the League Cup. We openly had a priority in that competition of playing second string players and hoping that would be enough to progress as far as possible. Thankfully our approach to the FA Cup seems rather more focused on putting out a strong team, I hope it continues (and I feel it will).

 

Of course it does - the FA Cup is much more valuable in any given sense...

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I don't like it, but can understand it more in early season, but by January/Feb you know if you'll likely be in a relegation fight. I'd go for the cup regardless, but when all but safe there's just no excuse. After all these years, while I'd be delighted to win the league cup, it would be nothing compared to the FA cup. I'd rather the league cup didn't exist to be honest, I think that in itself would make everyone a lot more excited about the FA cup again.

 

Winning the league cup is everything compared to winning nothing of note which is how it has been for over 30 years.

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Of course it does - the FA Cup is much more valuable in any given sense...

Of course it is. But there are various people (me being one of them) who would have preferred to see us prioritising the league cup in similar fashion. Alas it wasn't to be. Others are glad we didn't do that, which is of course their right, just an approach I disagree with given our prospects for this season.

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