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Saints v West Ham - Match Thread


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I really was hoping the two wins against Watford and Norwich we’re going to be the catalyst for our season, but it feels harder to ignore now that I’m reality we were outplayed by Watford and were hanging on against Norwich. Same old same old against Newcastle.

 

It actually amazes me how dreadful we are at home. The amount of times we go in at half time, damage already done and haven’t even made their keeper make one save. Was the same against Bournemouth, Everton, Leicester, Watford, West Ham. And we’ve still only scored the first goal once at home. How can we ever expect much when all we do is go in at half time losing everyone game?

 

In the last couple seasons I’ve always thought deep down we can get out of it, but with a combination of the sides that were crap last season being much improved, and the teams promoted showing they have something about them, I do think at this stage this could be the year we finally go.

 

There’s still loads of time to turn it around, but no arguments we are the second/third team in the league at this moment in time.

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Does Antonio always score with his hands? VAR is probably why WHU are now struggling. Cheating ********!

 

I'm still not sure whether when Stephens kicked the ball against Antonio's hand, the contact was unavoidable or whether Antonio deliberately put his hand there to stop the Stephens clearance. But with the new VAR rules, any ball to hand contact seems to be given as hand ball. I'm surprised more teams haven't taken advantage by deliberately kicking the ball at a defender's arm in the penalty area.

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I'm still not sure whether when Stephens kicked the ball against Antonio's hand, the contact was unavoidable or whether Antonio deliberately put his hand there to stop the Stephens clearance. But with the new VAR rules, any ball to hand contact seems to be given as hand ball. I'm surprised more teams haven't taken advantage by deliberately kicking the ball at a defender's arm in the penalty area.

 

So the VAR rules are basically any attacking hand contact rules out a goal. Accidental or not. That said he actually handles it before Stephens kicks it. Deliberate or not only he will know butto my mind that first contact is s handball underbold or new rules.

 

The thing about becoming numb to the football is you can see the game for what it is. I hate watching a game where fete is no control at all. Throw ins from wrong place, linesman running up to the line of the ball so the offside free kick is in the right place not the other way around. Sometimes would just like to see a game run properly.

 

Reality is that we are in a real relegation battle. If you can say it then you can’t be surprised by kisses! Teams in relegation battles lose games. Get Romeu in as a shield. Keep the four. Go 4.3.3 and do the best we can. Hope for reinforcements in the winter but don’t expect. Shouted the team and encourage energy and confidence not booing. Inge is a goal scorer in form so we have a chance. We have to accept the realities and keep encouraging

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This becoming a dog day afternoon scenario. We have a very average team and a manager who seems unable to lift or improve them. One step forward and two steps back = relegation.

The day the rot really started was the day Mané departed and Les Reed tried to convince us Nathan "Thierry Henri" Redmond would be a more than adequate replacement.

 

1. Les Reed never said that Nor did anyone else, Puel said Henry has “Thierry Henry like qualities” meaning he was a wide player who he felt could player up front in a two, he’s french and didn’t speak great English but anyone with any intelligence and no agenda could work out quite easily what he’s saying, not use it as a stick to beat the club with even years after the manager had gone who said it.

 

2. You don’t Ralph because he didn’t rate your son in law, it’s fair enough it’s family, but don’t pretend your agenda against him is anything these.

 

3. For a club historian you seem to have an intrinsic dislike for anyone else associated with the club too and have done for many years

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I'm still not sure whether when Stephens kicked the ball against Antonio's hand, the contact was unavoidable or whether Antonio deliberately put his hand there to stop the Stephens clearance. But with the new VAR rules, any ball to hand contact seems to be given as hand ball. I'm surprised more teams haven't taken advantage by deliberately kicking the ball at a defender's arm in the penalty area.

 

It’s not automatically a foul if it strikes a defenders hand it is if it strikes an attackers hand. It’s a ridiculous rule.

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That was shocking. Just before the goal under no pressure Hojbjerg took his eye off the ball, the ball goes under his foot not long after it's in our net. The goal was a debacle of poor defending. Don't anybody try to tell me we don't need a fierce, competent defensive coach. Bertrand was a joke, he dithered and moved position at least four times at a trot and ended up in no man's land when the ball went in. He was marking nobody, just gesture defending. A decisive move to the back post would have been the way to go. Stephen's ball watching lost the attacker yet again.

 

As for the possession, give me a break, the less possession we have the better our attacking football. For God's sake is there nobody at the club aware that we are being conned. The opposition want our centre backs to have the ball, as for Macarthy, he is a dopey idiot, alway looking to give the ball to a defender. When we have the ball at the back, does nobody realise why there is only a token press, it's to allow the defenders to rotate the ball and go nowhere.

 

From there the tactic is simple, the ball back to Macarthy to recyle or kick it long into massed opponents who will attack, or worse an attempt to play it out of midfield, slowly drawing all but the centre backs forward, win the ball and hit us on the break with only the centre backs to try and defend and the full backs and midfield drawn out of position. A bit better control from Antonio and it was a hammering.

 

We have to redefine again. Cedric is a hopeless, unintelligent defender. He tries his best but his physical deficiencies are a problem, he is not strong enough. Bertrand needs a bullet up his complacent arse. The centre backs in total aren't that good but neither are they that bad that a decent defensive coach couldn't improve a back four unit. We need a holding midfielder that ****ing holds and doesn't get drawn out. Then two attacking midfielders, Armstrong and maybe Boufal. Up front Ings, Djenepo, Adams or Long. Cut out the square possession, Macarthy stops passing it out and supplies big up and unders quickly. The back four defend we have five attackers we don't need both full backs up the field. Stop the goals is the key. After that the passing game is quick into the spaces running and forward passes. High tempo, high pressing. The opposite to how our ineffective team is trying to play.

 

To sum up the sad fact is that the more possession we have the less attacking we do. Throw ins are abysmal, stop waiting for the full backs, just grab the ball and stck it down the line. Object, no danger, win another throw in, get in behind the defence in wide areas, get to the goal line or win a corner. Square passing and inside throws are easily cut out especially by delaying.

Edited by derry
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The problems are multiple layered. There is obviously ownership issues with constant rumours about Gao's finances, involvment and even stories about him wanting to sell (I wish!!). You then have the upheaval with Reed, Wilson, Hunter, Kophl (?) and the rest. Then the paucity of the coaching staff (2 goalkeepers FFS). As far as the playing staff is concerned, Ralph was obviously dealt a very bad hand. Overpriced average players had sucked our player budget dry. We have 6 centre backs for instance that are very average and would struggle to get a place in another premier league team. We lack creative talent in the crucial midfield positions. Players that have performed well in the past are just not doing it this season (Gunn, Cedric, Bertrand, PEH, JWP, Redmond in particular). Ralph cannot escape criticism with some of his team selections and timing of substitutions although I think that we should stick with him, particularly if some of the other problems are sorted. In short until the problems are sorted we are f****d. Relegation is fast becoming a reality. This may be a good thing but who knows - we remember what happened last time.

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The opposition want our centre backs to have the ball, as for Macarthy, he is a dopey idiot, alway looking to give the ball to a defender. When we have the ball at the back, does nobody realise why there is only a token press, it's to allow the defenders to rotate the ball and go nowhere.

 

From there the tactic is simple, the ball back to Macarthy to recyle or kick it long into massed opponents who will attack, or worse an attempt to play it out of midfield, slowly drawing all but the centre backs forward, win the ball and hit us on the break with only the centre backs to try and defend and the full backs and midfield drawn out of position. A bit better control from Antonio and it was a hammering.

 

That's a very good summary of what was going on yesterday. When we got possession, we passed the ball sideways and backwards until passing it back to our goalkeeper, who then hoofed it upfield, where a West Ham player won the aerial duel for it every time. It would be interesting to see a breakdown of the percentage of our team's passes that go sideways and backwards as opposed to those that go forwards. Surely, we must have a higher percentage of sideways and backwards passes than any other team in the league. But, that was also the case before Ralph arrived. It's been coached into the players. In the club's coaching, at every level, undue stress is placed on keeping possession as opposed to trying to score goals. Ings, with his background of being coached at Liverpool, has been like a breath of fresh air.

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That's a very good summary of what was going on yesterday. When we got possession, we passed the ball sideways and backwards until passing it back to our goalkeeper, who then hoofed it upfield, where a West Ham player won the aerial duel for it every time. It would be interesting to see a breakdown of the percentage of our team's passes that go sideways and backwards as opposed to those that go forwards. Surely, we must have a higher percentage of sideways and backwards passes than any other team in the league. But, that was also the case before Ralph arrived. It's been coached into the players. In the club's coaching, at every level, undue stress is placed on keeping possession as opposed to trying to score goals. Ings, with his background of being coached at Liverpool, has been like a breath of fresh air.

 

Ings should be the captain.

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Another first half when we didn't turn up. Got better when Romeu came on, but as others have said Armstrong should have come on earlier.

 

Long should play at Centre back with his pace, jump and ability to clear the ball when the goal is gaping ! How the **** can he miss from that distance ?

 

Ings was unlucky with the disallowed goal and also the one that hit the post when he was flagged offside. Wish he had tapped in the rebound, as Creswell had played him on and it could have stood on a Var review.

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We were bullied for seventy minutes, we do need a large solid centre back who does similar, if nothing else!! However there is not a simple solution. West Ham has eleven bullies.

 

Personally Eric, risking ridicule on here, I'd go for Morrison of Cardiff, not the quickest but a beast in the air and a decent defensive organiser. He also gets his share of goals up front at corners etc. Wouldn't be too expensive, even worth a trade for one of the others.

Edited by derry
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We have a very average team

An average team would be great at the moment. We do not have an average team. We have a hopeless team, with only one or two players who can justifiably hold their heads high; Ings and ... OK, now I'm struggling. We also have a manager who cannot manage the defensive side of the team.

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Personally Eric, risking ridicule on here, I'd go for Morrison of Cardiff, not the quickest but a beast in the air and a decent defensive organiser. He also gets his share of goals up front at corners etc. Wouldn't be too expensive, even worth a trade for one of the others.

 

Won’t get any ridicule from me a good choice or I would go for Wes Morgan a winner leader

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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1. Les Reed never said that Nor did anyone else, Puel said Henry has “Thierry Henry like qualities” meaning he was a wide player who he felt could player up front in a two, he’s french and didn’t speak great English but anyone with any intelligence and no agenda could work out quite easily what he’s saying, not use it as a stick to beat the club with even years after the manager had gone who said it.

 

2. You don’t Ralph because he didn’t rate your son in law, it’s fair enough it’s family, but don’t pretend your agenda against him is anything these.

 

3. For a club historian you seem to have an intrinsic dislike for anyone else associated with the club too and have done for many years

 

Jesus, get a life. Do you really have to continue this hate campaign against FF after all these years. You do come across as a jealous spiteful tw*t at times.

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Pity he can't also be a player coach so he could teach Watson, Davis & co how to coach the Liverpool way, as opposed to the sideways and backwards passing Southampton way.

 

Haven’t seen Davis on the bench for a few weeks now is he still with 1st team

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Jesus, get a life. Do you really have to continue this hate campaign against FF after all these years. You do come across as a jealous spiteful tw*t at times.

 

Hate campaign? :lol:

 

He said things that aren’t true, I’m simply correcting him and pointing out a few facts.

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Another toothless display at home, against a very poor WHU team I have to say. PEH was woeful in particular, the rest little better, Ings aside who was the only player who looked like he wanted to win the game. It was difficult for the crowd to get behind the team at all yesterday given what was on display. The team clearly is not improving at all and now seem unable to do the basics. There was no movement anywhere, no-one making themselves space to receive a pass, virtually no wing play and crosses. We had a few mini breaks with JWP advancing with the ball, only to check back on the half way line, and yes, a sideways or backward pass losing all momentum. It's not ideal but we need Romeau and Armstrong in the midfield. I've admired Redmond over the years but he needs to be benched for a while. Cedric need to be told he's not a right winger as he was caught miles up the field on a few occasions. And with but 2 mins of normal time left on comes Adams FFS. What a mess. But for VAR the margin would have been more, Antonio bullied us all game but he is a handful.

The season is approaching the half way point and we look like genuine relegation candidates. The only game we looked comfortable in was Newcastle, and we still managed to lose that. The past 3 years have been a shambles, our best talent allowed to leave and the replacements not good enough to get a game, and the money has now run out. We have a manager who consistently picks under-performing players and who has little tactical ability at this level (which isn't that great really, a handful of teams aside the PL is pretty average at the moment).

As has been said, if we can't splash out on new players we need 2 dedicated coaches and a reliable No.2 for RH at least, to give him and the team a chance.

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That was shocking. Just before the goal under no pressure Hojbjerg took his eye off the ball, the ball goes under his foot not long after it's in our net. The goal was a debacle of poor defending. Don't anybody try to tell me we don't need a fierce, competent defensive coach. ...............

 

Excellent post and a good summary. I totally agree the two full backs are an issue, partly physical limitations, part complacency, and partly poor strategic instructions. I thought Stephens actually had an ok game, he was horrendously exposed by our 'no midfield' tactic and full backs who went AWOL.

 

The lack of movement is clearly frustrating those players who care. I rarely see JWP berate his fellow players but he is one of our few players who actually pushes forward and tries to make a pass. However so often he has no one to pass to, que a sideways or backwards ball, which frustrates us all. He is looking to recycle the ball quickly but when it inevitably goes to PEH, Redmond, or Bertrand they seem to lose the ball. It was noticeable that with Romeu and Armstrong on the pitch they supported JWP and the ball started to be drilled forward more and suddenly Ings was causing problems.

 

Ings was so frustrated at one point he went on a run that saw him take on the whole West Ham team, nearly did it as well, that was pure frustration. Another time Stephens had the ball and with no outlet just kept on running, eventually near their penalty area he did a pass and go with Ings (I think) and suddenly he was clear in the box. That's forbidden territory for CHs and his shot showed why. However once again just pure frustration. He got some applause for that from the Kingsland and the look he gave us said it all.

 

It is hard to see what can be done, put it down as a bad at the office (lot of those recently) and hope things improve next week. 15 points is disastrous and a win against Villa next week will push us near 20 points. There is always hope but boy do we need a change of tactics because the current system as Derry points out, just isn't working.

 

My biggest worry is whether RH has lost the dressing room as much as that actually happens. If we are confused by his tactics then what on earth do the players think.

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We obviously were/are hopelessly crap. No team who fields Bednarek and Stevens as it's go to cb combo deserves or is likely to survive in this league. However I would point to the parallels between this match and last week's against Newcastle. Away team miles better and should have been at least 2 goals up in both until home team finally woke up for last 20 mins or so and created some chances. Newcastle took theirs, we didn't but Ings was very unlucky not to score 2. (offside one when he hit the post was not offside and would have been allowed by VAR).

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Come on, you know what I mean. For years you have had some sort of issue regarding FF and the club historian bit.

 

The only issue I had with him was his constantly slagging off of the club on twitter and here. Even during the good times he slagged everyone off and *****ed about everything. I find it very strange that someone who has devoted much of his life to working on projects involving our club and probably made a few quid out of it, rarely has a good word to say about it.

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The only issue I had with him was his constantly slagging off of the club on twitter and here. Even during the good times he slagged everyone off and *****ed about everything. I find it very strange that someone who has devoted much of his life to working on projects involving our club and probably made a few quid out of it, rarely has a good word to say about it.

 

Ok, I get your point, mind you it’s very difficult to find anything positive to say about the club atm, club historian or not.

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An average team would be great at the moment. We do not have an average team. We have a hopeless team, with only one or two players who can justifiably hold their heads high; Ings and ... OK, now I'm struggling. We also have a manager who cannot manage the defensive side of the team.

 

Got it on one. A whole new team is required,and that's not going to happen as the dross that's out on loan or not near the first team need shifting first.

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The only issue I had with him was his constantly slagging off of the club on twitter and here. Even during the good times he slagged everyone off and *****ed about everything. I find it very strange that someone who has devoted much of his life to working on projects involving our club and probably made a few quid out of it, rarely has a good word to say about it.

If you really care about strict accuracy then I suggest you re read this last post of yours and then go back and read some of mine over the last few years. I think you will find I have only been critical in the last two seasons when there has been a lot to be critical about. I am just a fan like everybody else and as fed up as everyone else. I have no agenda, I would welcome decent new owners but realise that is unlikely so all I can do is vent my spleen on this forum. I am sorry if my views annoy you. You rarely let a comment of mine pass by without a snidey comment so Saint Billy is perfectly correct in what he says. I have obviously upset you somewhere down the line and quite badly I am guessing. I am very sorry if I have, I seem to remember I once offered to meet you to thrash out what it is I have done wrong. That offer still stands and hopefully we can put this to bed because others must find it all a bit tedious.

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Think we need to go back TO 5-3-2 - extra central defender, and gives Bertrand more freedom to overlap - the current setup means he never gets to go forward. But our main issue is that if we do ever break from defence, we get to halfway then immediately stop, come back and start knocking it about in defence again, giving the opposition time to set up their defence. If we break, we need to drive forward, ok it won't work all the time, but look at Son's goal last week against Burnley, it can work sometimes.

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