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Decent article about saints and our troubles

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Carl's doing a good job and he talks to the right people. I think he irritates some bodies at SMS and the fact we no longer have a vibrant local paper to question what goes on it is important journos like Carl flourish.

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Great read and generally sums up the position well. Not sure I agree about Lovren or Reed and no mention of the alleged legal issue between Kat and Gao.

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Great read and generally sums up the position well. Not sure I agree about Lovren or Reed and no mention of the alleged legal issue between Kat and Gao.
Yes it would have been good if he'd found out something about that. Would be amazing if kat could buy the club back.

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Carl's doing a good job and he talks to the right people. I think he irritates some bodies at SMS and the fact we no longer have a vibrant local paper to question what goes on it is important journos like Carl flourish.
Agreed. I may consider signing up if we continue to get decent articles like this.

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Yes it would have been good if he'd found out something about that. Would be amazing if kat could buy the club back.

 

She doesn’t want to club buy back.

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Good article but odd interpretation of Reed and Wilson’s legacy. Being a “football man” -often shorthand for tenure- is a reason why frauds like Reed can stay in the game so long. No wonder Koeman saw through Reed and the two didn’t get on. And whats the point of being a football man if it leads to increasingly costly mistakes. Indeed it seems that the Goas have overcompensated for poor recruitment and waste by micromanaging and keeping the football people on a short leash which is probably the only thing worse than having a duffer who should have been out to pasture years ago.

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Can somebody post the article I can't read it something about Google services bs....

 

I tried to but the article is twice as long as the forum would allow

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Yes it would have been good if he'd found out something about that. Would be amazing if kat could buy the club back.

 

Why would it be amazing if Kat bought the club back? So she could fu k it over again?

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Can somebody post the article I can't read it something about Google services bs....

 

It's behind a pay wall as Athletic is a subscription service.

 

The main points are:

 

- No one in senior management knows much about football and there's a lack of direction. (no surprise given Gao's lack of communication)

 

- Along with Reed and Wilson having left, Bill Green who sadly died was an important guy and heavily involved in transfers in.

 

- Kruger was told out of the blue to sack Reed and didn't really know why.

 

- Kruger left because he could see things were a mess.

 

- Nelly Gao is effectively the new Kruger.

 

- Ralph H has no support on the footballing side of things and there's no one to sit down with him and talk through footballing matters.

 

- we've signed a lot of rubbish.

 

- Ralph H likes a small group of 20 max in first team training, meaning the bloated squad is not even useful in training.

 

- We are jettisoning the unwanted people which means we will never turn a profit on them

 

- The academy is struggling and the lack of football peopke in key roles means the pathway to the first team is less clear

 

- Gaos convinced Kat they would preserve Markus' legacy

 

- Gao's commercial plans all seem centred around trying to sell to Chinese tourists

 

- All major decisions have to be rubber stamped by Gao which slows things down

 

- We don't have any on-pitch leaders

 

- Our centre backs are rubbish

 

 

Basically. What those of us capable of reading between the lines have said all along: Gao is seriously bad news.

 

#GaoOut #Gaoingdown

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A really decent article. Like mentioned above this is real journalism unlike the local rag which is only I terested in advertising and click-bait.

The highlighting of RHs effectively isolation in terms of football knowledge in the club is something I hadnt considered or recognised. As an international coach in my own sport, having like minds and knowledge around you to de-brief is essential, especially in the short term. Over the linger term vision and strategy takes over and emotion is far less prevalent.

I hope the business leaders (Semmens, really, who on the face of it seems a decent guy) can provide the support network and structure RH needs to help him prosper. Currently he is trying to provide that environment for the players and clearly does not have the resources to do so.

I'm going tonight, and have no idea what to expect. I will enjoy visiting a new stadium and go from there!!!

Gao needs to take a look at what Man City are doing and find a way of doing it in a similar way. Clearly the amount of money available is miles apart but he needs to decide whether he can deliver or not. If not, sell; if yes, hurry up!!!!

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It's behind a pay wall as Athletic is a subscription service.

 

The main points are:

 

- No one in senior management knows much about football and there's a lack of direction. (no surprise given Gao's lack of communication)

 

- Along with Reed and Wilson having left, Bill Green who sadly died was an important guy and heavily involved in transfers in.

 

- Kruger was told out of the blue to sack Reed and didn't really know why.

 

- Kruger left because he could see things were a mess.

 

- Nelly Gao is effectively the new Kruger.

 

- Ralph H has no support on the footballing side of things and there's no one to sit down with him and talk through footballing matters.

 

- we've signed a lot of rubbish.

 

- Ralph H likes a small group of 20 max in first team training, meaning the bloated squad is not even useful in training.

 

- We are jettisoning the unwanted people which means we will never turn a profit on them

 

- The academy is struggling and the lack of football peopke in key roles means the pathway to the first team is less clear

 

- Gaos convinced Kat they would preserve Markus' legacy

 

- Gao's commercial plans all seem centred around trying to sell to Chinese tourists

 

- All major decisions have to be rubber stamped by Gao which slows things down

 

- We don't have any on-pitch leaders

 

- Our centre backs are rubbish

 

 

Basically. What those of us capable of reading between the lines have said all along: Gao is seriously bad news.

 

#GaoOut #Gaoingdown

 

With all of that, it makes you wonder why Ralph actually wants to stay

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Carl's doing a good job and he talks to the right people. I think he irritates some bodies at SMS and the fact we no longer have a vibrant local paper to question what goes on it is important journos like Carl flourish.

 

Agreed, but I appreciate them bringing in the big guns for this piece. David Ornstein and the like have decades of experience and contact-building to bring to the party, which is what you really need to get inside organisations as secretive as football clubs. Neither Carl nor the Echo have the resources to put together something like this alone.

 

With all of that, it makes you wonder why Ralph actually wants to stay

 

Frankly I'm not sure how much he does want to stay, reading that. One journo (can't remember who) mentioned on Sunday Supplement the other day that he could jump at the next offer from another club.

Edited by DuncanRG

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It's behind a pay wall as Athletic is a subscription service.

 

The main points are:

 

- No one in senior management knows much about football and there's a lack of direction. (no surprise given Gao's lack of communication)

 

- Along with Reed and Wilson having left, Bill Green who sadly died was an important guy and heavily involved in transfers in.

 

- Kruger was told out of the blue to sack Reed and didn't really know why.

 

- Kruger left because he could see things were a mess.

 

- Nelly Gao is effectively the new Kruger.

 

- Ralph H has no support on the footballing side of things and there's no one to sit down with him and talk through footballing matters.

 

- we've signed a lot of rubbish.

 

- Ralph H likes a small group of 20 max in first team training, meaning the bloated squad is not even useful in training.

 

- We are jettisoning the unwanted people which means we will never turn a profit on them

 

- The academy is struggling and the lack of football peopke in key roles means the pathway to the first team is less clear

 

- Gaos convinced Kat they would preserve Markus' legacy

 

- Gao's commercial plans all seem centred around trying to sell to Chinese tourists

 

- All major decisions have to be rubber stamped by Gao which slows things down

 

- We don't have any on-pitch leaders

 

- Our centre backs are rubbish

 

 

Basically. What those of us capable of reading between the lines have said all along: Gao is seriously bad news.

 

#GaoOut #Gaoingdown

 

What a shambles.

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It’s a quality article . I heard some buzz about The Athletic a while ago it’s the way serious journalism is going.

You can download the App sign up fo free trial then I think I it is £2.99 a month.

Well worth it rather than reading copy and paste dross that you get from The Echo or even The Guardian.

Covers all world sports.

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Good article although I feel it overlooks the fact that it has been a decline since the summer Koeman, Mane, Pelle left (2016 I think) - a decline which saw the demise of Reed ultimately.

 

Not a decline that has just happened this year.

 

But otherwise many pieces that are likely true. Ultimately the lack of people with knowledge of football (be that on or off field) running a football club plus a clueless owner without money to invest, is not a successful combination.

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The writing was on the wall the day we sold the club to a Chinese business man who has no personal loyalty to Southampton or the club. The city lost it's club then and if it's ever to recover it will be after Gao sells. Can anyone see any successful future with him in ownership?

 

So the manner in which he sells is the big issue for us now. The timing of it and how much Gao intends to suck out of the sinking ship.

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Agreed, but I appreciate them bringing in the big guns for this piece. David Ornstein and the like have decades of experience and contact-building to bring to the party, which is what you really need to get inside organisations as secretive as football clubs. Neither Carl nor the Echo have the resources to put together something like this alone.

 

 

 

Frankly I'm not sure how much he does want to stay, reading that. One journo (can't remember who) mentioned on Sunday Supplement the other day that he could jump at the next offer from another club.

 

Christ, hope not. Despite some mistakes, Ralph is probably the only good thing here at the moment. Him choosing to walk away would show we're pretty fcked.

 

While he's here, given the quality of the league's bottom half, we're only ever a couple of good signings from doing alright.

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The writing was on the wall the day we sold the club to a Chinese business man who has no personal loyalty to Southampton or the club. The city lost it's club then and if it's ever to recover it will be after Gao sells. Can anyone see any successful future with him in ownership?

 

So the manner in which he sells is the big issue for us now. The timing of it and how much Gao intends to suck out of the sinking ship.

 

I agree we need him gone, but it doesn't change the fact the money was spent and wasted. If Lemina, Carillo, Elyounoussi and co had been decent signings we wouldn't be in this mess. I want a decent owner, but for me whoever chose Pellegrino and Hughes is most to blame.

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It's behind a pay wall as Athletic is a subscription service.

 

The main points are:

 

- No one in senior management knows much about football and there's a lack of direction. (no surprise given Gao's lack of communication)

 

- Along with Reed and Wilson having left, Bill Green who sadly died was an important guy and heavily involved in transfers in.

 

- Kruger was told out of the blue to sack Reed and didn't really know why.

 

- Kruger left because he could see things were a mess.

 

- Nelly Gao is effectively the new Kruger.

 

- Ralph H has no support on the footballing side of things and there's no one to sit down with him and talk through footballing matters.

 

- we've signed a lot of rubbish.

 

- Ralph H likes a small group of 20 max in first team training, meaning the bloated squad is not even useful in training.

 

- We are jettisoning the unwanted people which means we will never turn a profit on them

 

- The academy is struggling and the lack of football peopke in key roles means the pathway to the first team is less clear

 

- Gaos convinced Kat they would preserve Markus' legacy

 

- Gao's commercial plans all seem centred around trying to sell to Chinese tourists

 

- All major decisions have to be rubber stamped by Gao which slows things down

 

- We don't have any on-pitch leaders

 

- Our centre backs are rubbish

 

 

Basically. What those of us capable of reading between the lines have said all along: Gao is seriously bad news.

 

#GaoOut #Gaoingdown

 

Christ Almighty. It's worse than I imagined. I actually now can sympathise with Ralph. As a club we are properly ****ked with this dic khead Chinaman in charge. How on earth did we get to this point???

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Christ Almighty. It's worse than I imagined. I actually now can sympathise with Ralph. As a club we are properly ****ked with this dic khead Chinaman in charge. How on earth did we get to this point???

 

Kat got us to this point

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GAO is a complete waste of space.... whilst he and his daughter are involved we are going absolutely nowhere. I fear for our future with Blackburn and the venkis coming to mind.

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We might avoid relegation this year, but it will only postpone the inevitable. No money, and a business model based on buying young players and if their any good sell them quick, and if their not loan them out to anyone who'll pay a small percentage of their wages, is not working. The sooner we take the medicine, ie. Relegation, the sooner we can be shot of Gao, and the sooner we can get back on track.

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Fascinating article and clearly The Athletic have a put a lot of work into it with how many journalists are credited.

 

A really depressing read with so many sources (including players and staff) disillusioned. No real solutions offered either... can't help we are turning into the new Sunderland, it seems so rudderless at the moment.

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It’s a massive shame.

 

I always look back at that amazing team we had under Poch. Incredible, fearless young talent who were the envy of the Premier League.

 

All that effort is gone, wasted. We’re capitulating in the worst way possible. Even Billy Sharp is thriving. It’s a bad time to dr a Saints fan right now but I do believe we can thrive again if the decks are wiped.

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Gao needs to take a look at what Man City are doing and find a way of doing it in a similar way. Clearly the amount of money available is miles apart but he needs to decide whether he can deliver or not. If not, sell; if yes, hurry up!!!!

 

What makes you think Gao is interested in 'delivering' anything? I've always thought the club was a place for him to park money outside of China, with the rhetoric around continuing our 'self-sustaining' model simply a convenient way for him to avoid explaining why he can't provide any additional funds.

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What makes you think Gao is interested in 'delivering' anything? I've always thought the club was a place for him to park money outside of China, with the rhetoric around continuing our 'self-sustaining' model simply a convenient way for him to avoid explaining why he can't provide any additional funds.

 

Indeed.

 

He said he saw other people getting money out of China so thought he’d better try to do so. It’s as simple as that.

 

No ambition, no plan, no investment, no joy. That’s Saints.

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- Ralph H has no support on the footballing side of things and there's no one to sit down with him and talk through footballing matters.

 

Football in higher leagues is a "business" and no longer a sport, so a lot of the points you posted are typical bad business decisions from a bad and arrogant leader / owner (which of course will have a very negative impact), but this point is the one that worries me the most right now.

 

To quote a phrase "No Man is an Island" and RH is now having to act like one, and unfortunately has no opportunity to change this himself at Saints as it appears to be micro-managed by the football illiterate Gao. Other have also implied this but you focus on changing the things you can, and for RH this is really only who employs him, so if I was him I'd be keeping a very close eye on managerial vacancies in Austria and Germany.

Edited by Fatboy40

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It’s a massive shame.

 

I always look back at that amazing team we had under Poch. Incredible, fearless young talent who were the envy of the Premier League.

 

All that effort is gone, wasted. We’re capitulating in the worst way possible. Even Billy Sharp is thriving. It’s a bad time to dr a Saints fan right now but I do believe we can thrive again if the decks are wiped.

 

I am not sure Billy Sharp is thriving. He spends most of his time on the bench.

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I am not sure Billy Sharp is thriving. He spends most of his time on the bench.
And when he comes on he looks miles out of his depth.

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I am not sure Billy Sharp is thriving. He spends most of his time on the bench.

 

Billy Sharp is nearing the end of his career, nearly 34. He has been good for Sheff Utd in the Champ, but now is more of a talisman now that they are in the PL, he comes on as sub, lifts the crowd and the team and does his bit to help. Sadly for him the PL came too late, his fitness is not up to it due largely to his age. That said, I'd still have him at Saints in preference to most of our largely **** strikers.

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Football in higher leagues is a "business" and no longer a sport, so a lot of the points you posted are typical bad business decisions from a bad and arrogant leader / owner (which of course will have a very negative impact), but this point is the one that worries me the most right now.

 

To quote a phrase "No Man is an Island" and RH is now having to act like one, and unfortunately has no opportunity to change this himself at Saints as it appears to be micro-managed by the football illiterate Gao. Other have also implied this but you focus on changing the things you can, and for RH this is really only who employs him, so if I was him I'd be keeping a very close eye on managerial vacancies in Austria and Germany.

 

Can you imagine the impact of one, Ralph resigning (not being sacked) and two, having Kelvin or someone similar in charge [emoji38]

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I think it is fairly obvious all is not right at the club. Whilst Bayern Munich is a huge club and much bigger than Saints, Rohl has gone in as an Analyst and his role at Saints had a lot more responsibility and at his relatively young age would learn more in his role in the Premier League. As soon as Gao came in, I feared for the future of the club and his intentions. Like others have said, I fear we are going to end up down the Blackburn and Sunderland routes due to lack of investment and more importantly completely out of touch in what owning a football club entails and how you cannot treat fans as just customers.

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I think it is fairly obvious all is not right at the club. Whilst Bayern Munich is a huge club and much bigger than Saints, Rohl has gone in as an Analyst and his role at Saints had a lot more responsibility and at his relatively young age would learn more in his role in the Premier League. As soon as Gao came in, I feared for the future of the club and his intentions. Like others have said, I fear we are going to end up down the Blackburn and Sunderland routes due to lack of investment and more importantly completely out of touch in what owning a football club entails and how you cannot treat fans as just customers.

Don't think you should readtoo much into the title of his appointment. He was hardly going to replace Kovac and Kovac, or Herr Flick. He has gone their to bolster the existing coaching squad. I bet he's not actually just sat around analysing the player stats.

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What makes you think Gao is interested in 'delivering' anything? I've always thought the club was a place for him to park money outside of China, with the rhetoric around continuing our 'self-sustaining' model simply a convenient way for him to avoid explaining why he can't provide any additional funds.

 

I agree, but what was the motivation for KL to sell to him while retaining a share? The deal took ages to complete, I am sure there would have been other buyers around but it never looked as though she was interested in finding them. If Gao got a route to get money (that he appeared not to have anyway) out of China, what was KL actually after? if it was £200m, she could have got that reasonably quickly from syphoning off some of the PL money each year, and still own the assets.

 

Maybe she wanted an easy way to get investment cash into China?

 

If only the investigative journalists could investigate that - but I doubt that there was any illegality, so there wouldn't be much of a market for the results to reward their effort.

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