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Sam Wallace latest Saints Telegraph article


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Some thoughts that came to me while reading the article - 

I don’t think there is such a thing as a ‘good’ owner out there for us. Sobering thought. 
 

To have a manager that is regarded as unsalable is a dangerous road to go down. The Board - wisely or not - have hitched their wagon very firmly to the manager but despite what the article says I am sure Gao wouldn’t hesitate to pull the plug on all of them if things went south. 
 

in our 135 year history why have we had money worries for nearly all of them except the 3 years when Marcus Liebherr took over. 
 

Have the fans put Ralph on too high a pedestal - he certainly is not The Messiah. 
 

Football is fucked while the playing fields are so slanted towards clubs that have untold (corruptly obtained) riches hurled at them. 
 

All in all a bit depressing. 

 

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13 minutes ago, Lord Duckhunter said:

What restraints has he got that the previous 3 managers didn’t have? 
 

 

I think all 3 were backed considerably more and had much more flexibility than Ralph has had, in my opinion. Obviously the primary reason for that is because we haven't had mega sales to top up the kitty, which has made it more difficult.

Puel had money available and was able to bring in Boufal, Gabbiadini, Hojbjerg, Redmond, McCarthy in the two windows he was with us. 60m in one season.

We afforded too much money to Pellegrino and it still makes me weep. He bought in Lemina, Hoedt, Carrillo, Bednarek. - Just under £60m across two windows.

Hugues also had more flexibility. Vestergaard, Elyonoussi, Gunn, Armstrong, Ings. (loan at that point, but it was already permeant and the fee was committed bar the ink). - About 55m in a single window.

Edited by S-Clarke
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11 minutes ago, Fitzhugh Fella said:

Some thoughts that came to me while reading the article - 

I don’t think there is such a thing as a ‘good’ owner out there for us. Sobering thought. 
 

To have a manager that is regarded as unsalable is a dangerous road to go down. The Board - wisely or not - have hitched their wagon very firmly to the manager but despite what the article says I am sure Gao wouldn’t hesitate to pull the plug on all of them if things went south. 
 

in our 135 year history why have we had money worries for nearly all of them except the 3 years when Marcus Liebherr took over. 
 

Have the fans put Ralph on too high a pedestal - he certainly is not The Messiah. 
 

Football is fucked while the playing fields are so slanted towards clubs that have untold (corruptly obtained) riches hurled at them. 
 

All in all a bit depressing. 

 

I agree, I think it is a little bit dangerous. I don't think it's ever sustainable to build a club around a single entity, but maybe we feel that his methods are easily transferable to the next manager in the future - this is just a blueprint etc. Hard to know without seeing the finer detail of it all.

The local aspects of the board we have are backing him to the hilt, that much is clear. They know what he's about and Martin doesn't strike me as someone who makes silly or rash decisions. I'm sure the board are hoping for new ownership as much as the rest of us. There are probably no amazing owners, no faultless owners, they all have bad points but they will also bring their good points or at least something to the party. That automatically trumps Gao, who brings nothing to the party.

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24 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

I think all 3 were backed considerably more and had much more flexibility than Ralph has had, in my opinion. Obviously the primary reason for that is because we haven't had mega sales to top up the kitty, which has made it more difficult.

Puel had money available and was able to bring in Boufal, Gabbiadini, Hojbjerg, Redmond, McCarthy in the two windows he was with us. 60m in one season.

We afforded too much money to Pellegrino and it still makes me weep. He bought in Lemina, Hoedt, Carrillo, Bednarek. - Just under £60m across two windows.

Hugues also had more flexibility. Vestergaard, Elyonoussi, Gunn, Armstrong, Ings. (loan at that point, but it was already permeant and the fee was committed bar the ink). - About 55m in a single window.

It’s relative what other clubs  spent. 

Last  season we were 13th highest spenders. 

Puel & Pellegrino we were 12th highest spenders.

Hughes we were 13th.

All much of a muchness. 

People are making excuses for the bloke. 

He’s got better centre halves than Puel had (after VvD got injured), yet we can’t defend. We’ve got no bollocks, yet 6 of the present squad did us proud at Wembley despite a horrendous decision and a 2-0 deficit. Nowadays facing that, we’d get beat 4 or 5 before crying about the unfairness of it. As I wrote, if we go out of the cup at Boscombe questions will need to be asked.
 

 

Edited by Lord Duckhunter
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47 minutes ago, Suhari said:

Are you including Forster, Valery, Hoedt, Gunn, Long and Moi in 'size of our wage bill'?

+Lemina and we’ve only just got shot of Carillo whose wages are in last years figures too.

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1 minute ago, Lord Duckhunter said:

It’s relative to what over clubs spent. 

Last  season we were 13th highest spenders. 

Puel & Pellegrino we were 12th highest spenders.

Hughes we were 13th.

All much of a muchness. 

People are making excuses for the bloke. 

He’s got better centre halves than Puel had (after VvD got injured), yet we can’t defend. We’ve got no bollocks, yet 6 of the present squad did us proud at Wembley despite a horrendous decision and a 2-0 deficit. Nowadays facing that, we’d get beat 4 or 5 before crying about the unfairness of it. As I wrote, if we go out of the cup at Boscombe questions will need to be asked.
 

 

He's performed better with this squad than any of the previous managers did.

He's in the main using the players the previous managers bought in, they are still a bad mix IMO.

In the main we've struggled with this group of players under multiple managers, the first manager we've had to bring some sense of cohesiveness to the rabble is Ralph. I'm not making excuses for him, I'm just stating the facts. It's not great at the moment, clearly not, but don't let this spell cloud his entire tenure - which in the main, has been good.

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1 hour ago, S-Clarke said:

He's performed better with this squad than any of the previous managers did.

He's in the main using the players the previous managers bought in, they are still a bad mix IMO.

In the main we've struggled with this group of players under multiple managers, the first manager we've had to bring some sense of cohesiveness to the rabble is Ralph. I'm not making excuses for him, I'm just stating the facts. It's not great at the moment, clearly not, but don't let this spell cloud his entire tenure - which in the main, has been good.

If you’re using facts, I hope you’re not trying to say he’s done better than Claude did. God knows what you’d do if Ralph managed to get us to 8th and a cup final from here, probably propose a statue and freedom of the city. 

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9 minutes ago, Lord Duckhunter said:

If you’re using facts, I hope you’re not trying to say he’s done better than Claude did. God knows what you’d do if Ralph managed to get us to 8th and a cup final from here, probably propose a statue and freedom of the city. 

Points wise, he did.

52 points over a single season compared to Puels 46, which looked better than it was in truth.

It was pretty clear to most that Puel was the wrong man for this club and league. It just didn't fit. Ralph does fit, what he's trying to do isn't at odds with this league or the fans - maybe just the squad.

Edited by S-Clarke
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2 hours ago, Fitzhugh Fella said:

Some thoughts that came to me while reading the article - 

I don’t think there is such a thing as a ‘good’ owner out there for us. Sobering thought. 
 

To have a manager that is regarded as unsalable is a dangerous road to go down. The Board - wisely or not - have hitched their wagon very firmly to the manager but despite what the article says I am sure Gao wouldn’t hesitate to pull the plug on all of them if things went south. 
 

in our 135 year history why have we had money worries for nearly all of them except the 3 years when Marcus Liebherr took over. 
 

Have the fans put Ralph on too high a pedestal - he certainly is not The Messiah. 
 

Football is fucked while the playing fields are so slanted towards clubs that have untold (corruptly obtained) riches hurled at them. 
 

All in all a bit depressing. 

 

You’ve hated every owner/chairman we’ve had aside from a short spell sucking off Kruger when he agreed to sell your book in the club shop. You don’t like Ralph because he didn’t play Sam Gallagher so your view is tainted 

Edited by Turkish
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24 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

Points wise, he did.

52 points over a single season compared to Puels 46, which looked better than it was in truth.

It was pretty clear to most that Puel was the wrong man for this club and league. It just didn't fit. Ralph does fit, what he's trying to do isn't at odds with this league or the fans - maybe just the squad.

It’s points now, not league position, solely because that one particular fact backs up your opinion.
 

 I don’t particularly care how many points a team gets, just where they finish. I haven’t a clue how many points Lawrie got us, just that we finished second. Do you think West Ham fans will care if they get into the top four this season with less points than normally achieves that. Will they say that Moyes achievement “looked better than it was”. Course not, nobody does. Only people performing mental gymnastics to justify an opinion,do. Strange from a bloke dealing in facts. The fact is, had Puel been in charge with the same record as Ralph, you’d have your pitchfork out. 

Edited by Lord Duckhunter
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25 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

Points wise, he did.

52 points over a single season compared to Puels 46, which looked better than it was in truth.

It was pretty clear to most that Puel was the wrong man for this club and league. It just didn't fit. Ralph does fit, what he's trying to do isn't at odds with this league or the fans - maybe just the squad.

People didn’t like Puel from the start because they didn’t like his interviews I remember after a couple of games fans were slagging off his boring interviews. He could do no right in some peoples eyes despite leading us in one of our best ever seasons. 

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1 minute ago, Turkish said:

People didn’t like Puel from the start because they didn’t like his interviews I remember after a couple of games fans were slagging off his boring interviews. He could do no right in some peoples eyes despite leading us in one of our best ever seasons. 

... and he also completely fucked up our oh so rare Euro campaign. Some of his team selection was strange and his tactics in the last game were unforgivable.

A club like us gets rare bites of the European cherry and he gave it too low a priority. 

 

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5 minutes ago, Turkish said:

People didn’t like Puel from the start because they didn’t like his interviews I remember after a couple of games fans were slagging off his boring interviews. He could do no right in some peoples eyes despite leading us in one of our best ever seasons. 

Nice try

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12 minutes ago, Lord Duckhunter said:

It’s points now, not league position, solely because that one particular fact backs up your opinion.
 

 I don’t particularly care how many points a team gets, just where they finish. I haven’t a clue how many points Lawrie got us, just that we finished second. Do you think West Ham fans will care if they get into the top four this season with less points than normally achieves that. Will they say that Moyes achievement “looked better than it was”. Course not, nobody does. Only people performing mental gymnastics to justify an opinion,do. Strange from a bloke dealing in facts. The fact is, had Puel been in charge with the same record as Ralph, you’d have your pitchfork out. 

Where have I said anything about league position?

Why judge a season on league position, rather than points? Surely that's going to lead to an incredibly skewed view of the success (good, or bad)? I'm basing Ralphs success on the points accumulation, not where he finished. He achieved 52 points and sat in 11th, whereas Puel achieved 46 points and sat in 8th. That's in black and white and is fact. It doesn't take much to work out which was the better season.

The points tally is the most revealing factor of a good season, and in most cases that will also lead to a decent position in the league.

46 points and 8th was total freak. We were 2 points behind Stoke all the way down in 13th. It was insane we finished top half. That was certainly not a good judge of a season and I still hate it when people jump up and down and say ''You hounded out a great manager, he got you 8th, in a cup final''. You try and sit watching his games for an entire season. I was dying inside watching his team and so were thousands and thousands of us.

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12 minutes ago, Turkish said:

People didn’t like Puel from the start because they didn’t like his interviews I remember after a couple of games fans were slagging off his boring interviews. He could do no right in some peoples eyes despite leading us in one of our best ever seasons. 

It's so weird when people cite compulsory media interviews as a means of judging a manager. Pochettino barely spoke English when he led us but he did his talking through performances on the pitch and we respected him for it. Unfortunately for Puel, apart from a few matches before Gabbiadini got injured, his football was for the most part pretty boring and that was apparent right from the start.

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8 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

Where have I said anything about league position?

Why judge a season on league position, rather than points? Surely that's going to lead to an incredibly skewed view of the success (good, or bad)? I'm basing Ralphs success on the points accumulation, not where he finished. He achieved 52 points and sat in 11th, whereas Puel achieved 46 points and sat in 8th. That's in black and white and is fact. It doesn't take much to work out which was the better season.

The points tally is the most revealing factor of a good season, and in most cases that will also lead to a decent position in the league.

46 points and 8th was total freak. We were 2 points behind Stoke all the way down in 13th. It was insane we finished top half. That was certainly not a good judge of a season and I still hate it when people jump up and down and say ''You hounded out a great manager, he got you 8th, in a cup final''. You try and sit watching his games for an entire season. I was dying inside watching his team and so were thousands and thousands of us.

I wasn’t dying inside when we beat Inter, won at Anfield and the Emirates, hammered champions Leicester 3-0, won 3-0 at West Ham, scored 4 goals away from home back to back against Sunderland and Watford, i died a bit inside when we lost the cup final due to in no small part yet another awful officials decision though.  

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22 minutes ago, Tamesaint said:

... and he also completely fucked up our oh so rare Euro campaign. Some of his team selection was strange and his tactics in the last game were unforgivable.

A club like us gets rare bites of the European cherry and he gave it too low a priority. 

 

Koeman fucked our an oh so rare euro campaign the season before with two dire performances in the qualifiers, especially away. Yet that never gets mentioned. 

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13 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

Where have I said anything about league position?

Why judge a season on league position, rather than points? Surely that's going to lead to an incredibly skewed view of the success (good, or bad)? I'm basing Ralphs success on the points accumulation, not where he finished. He achieved 52 points and sat in 11th, whereas Puel achieved 46 points and sat in 8th. That's in black and white and is fact. It doesn't take much to work out which was the better season.

The points tally is the most revealing factor of a good season, and in most cases that will also lead to a decent position in the league.

46 points and 8th was total freak. We were 2 points behind Stoke all the way down in 13th. It was insane we finished top half. That was certainly not a good judge of a season and I still hate it when people jump up and down and say ''You hounded out a great manager, he got you 8th, in a cup final''. You try and sit watching his games for an entire season. I was dying inside watching his team and so were thousands and thousands of us.

I thought this was a wind up at first, but you're actually serious. The only way to judge the success of a league season is by where clubs finish in a league. If a club finishes 3rd on say 80 points, but win the league the following season with say 78 points, on your rationale they've done worse despite winning the title. That's a bit crazy.

8th is better than 11th. 

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Just now, Turkish said:

I wasn’t dying inside when we beat Inter, won at Anfield and the Emirates, hammered champions Leicester 3-0, won 3-0 at West Ham, scored 4 goals away from home back to back against Sunderland and Watford, i died a bit inside when we lost the cup final due to in no small part yet another awful officials decision though.  

There were some highlights, no denying that. But whilst we beat Inter, we pissed away a decent opportunity to actually progress against Hapoel at home and Sparta away. The lack of ambition at home to Hapoel was crazy. Two seasons we cocked up Europe, very frustrating. 

It just didn't feel right, some players came to the fore in spite of Puel....but it just didn't seem the right fit from the word go. I didn't enjoy that season as much as the previous 5 or 6 and it was all a bit downhill from there. We should have replaced Koeman with someone able to carry the momentum, we just floundered after that and in truth, bar last season, have never really recovered from that appointment and the recruitment which was forthcoming.

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Just now, egg said:

I thought this was a wind up at first, but you're actually serious. The only way to judge the success of a league season is by where clubs finish in a league. If a club finishes 3rd on say 80 points, but win the league the following season with say 78 points, on your rationale they've done worse despite winning the title. That's a bit crazy.

8th is better than 11th. 

You have to judge it with some context, surely. 8th is better than 11th, sure, but 52 points is better than 46 and in my eyes tells a better story of the season. 

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6 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

There were some highlights, no denying that. But whilst we beat Inter, we pissed away a decent opportunity to actually progress against Hapoel at home and Sparta away. The lack of ambition at home to Hapoel was crazy. Two seasons we cocked up Europe, very frustrating. 

It just didn't feel right, some players came to the fore in spite of Puel....but it just didn't seem the right fit from the word go. I didn't enjoy that season as much as the previous 5 or 6 and it was all a bit downhill from there. We should have replaced Koeman with someone able to carry the momentum, we just floundered after that and in truth, bar last season, have never really recovered from that appointment and the recruitment which was forthcoming.

You also have to remember as well as losing Koeman we also lost Mane, Wanyama and Pelle in the summer then Van Dijk and Fonte in January. Puel had to manage without 5 of the best players from the last two season for more than half his year in charge. He wasn’t perfect but I don’t think many managers would have done better in the circumstances 

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9 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

You have to judge it with some context, surely. 8th is better than 11th, sure, but 52 points is better than 46 and in my eyes tells a better story of the season. 

A season where we also lost 9-0 and were utterly dreadful for 1/3 of it? 

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3 hours ago, Lord Duckhunter said:

What restraints has he got that the previous 3 managers didn’t have? 
 

 

S-Clarke has already answered and I echo his thoughts, Ralph has not had the financial backing the previous three did yet has done a much better job than them (Puel debatable). He is largely still working with the misfits they brought in.

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21 minutes ago, egg said:

I thought this was a wind up at first, but you're actually serious. The only way to judge the success of a league season is by where clubs finish in a league. If a club finishes 3rd on say 80 points, but win the league the following season with say 78 points, on your rationale they've done worse despite winning the title. That's a bit crazy.

8th is better than 11th. 

Ultimately final position is what matters, but it certainly needs to be looked at in the context of points accrued as well. More points = more wins regardless of how the table shapes up around you. The 8th place under Puel was an anomoly and more to do with other teams being so poor rather than Saints being good.

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7 minutes ago, Turkish said:

A season where we also lost 9-0 and were utterly dreadful for 1/3 of it? 

We're dreadful for 1/3 of most seasons tbf. The Southampton way.

The difference for me is that you can see what Ralph is trying to do. With Puel I never really understood what he was trying to implement here. In the main his football was dour and we limped to 46 points in the end, with something like 5 wins between January and May (admittedly not much better than we're on at the moment!) He wasn't helped with the sales and that was probably when our recruitment started to go to the shit, we didn't reinvest the Mane/Wanyama/Pelle money as well as we had previously.

Him and Ralph are the two best managers we've had since Koeman, but I will always prefer Ralph. That's just my opinion.

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14 minutes ago, Turkish said:

A season where we also lost 9-0 and were utterly dreadful for 1/3 of it? 

.....weren't we also quite fortunate to play in front of no fans at home for a significant part of last season.

We'd been choking in front of our own fans for a long time. Ralph was lucky to be spared that. 

Whether we genuinely have got over our shit-at-home issue has yet to be tested.

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1 hour ago, Turkish said:

You’ve hated every owner/chairman we’ve had aside from a short spell sucking off Kruger when he agreed to sell your book in the club shop. You don’t like Ralph because he didn’t play Sam Gallagher so your view is tainted 

God you are such a sad person

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2 minutes ago, CB Fry said:

.....weren't we also quite fortunate to play in front of no fans at home for a significant part of last season.

We'd been choking in front of our own fans for a long time. Ralph was lucky to be spared that. 

Whether we genuinely have got over our shit-at-home issue has yet to be tested.

3 wins at home with fans up until lockdown wasnt it?

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4 minutes ago, S-Clarke said:

We're dreadful for 1/3 of most seasons tbf. The Southampton way.

The difference for me is that you can see what Ralph is trying to do. With Puel I never really understood what he was trying to implement here. In the main his football was dour and we limped to 46 points in the end, with something like 5 wins between January and May (admittedly not much better than we're on at the moment!) He wasn't helped with the sales and that was probably when our recruitment started to go to the shit, we didn't reinvest the Mane/Wanyama/Pelle money as well as we had previously.

Him and Ralph are the two best managers we've had since Koeman, but I will always prefer Ralph. That's just my opinion.

I prefer Ralph too but it’s become gospel Puel was a disaster when he was anything but given the circumstances he had to deal with

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4 minutes ago, Turkish said:

True though isn’t it. 

No it’s not but there’s no point arguing with someone who hates behind a clock of anonymity. Come out from behind your keyboard and spin your vile but we all know you haven’t got the bollocks. Go on brave heart prove me wrong

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2 minutes ago, Suhari said:

Which manager really had/has the better squad I wonder: Ralph or Puel?

 

 

 

It seems the SaintsWeb expert answer is "it's not Ralph's fault he was saddled with the same shit players from the Puel era" but at the same time "Puel only did okay because he had a much better squad than Ralph has".

Forum logic at its best.

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Ralph has fallen foul of a disasterous youth system and broke club. He’s given it a go, but it was always clear to most that our youngsters are a long way short of the required mark. People slating him for letting fullbacks go who can’t get into poor championship / league 1 teams, he’s wanted  new fullbacks for a while but the club hasn’t found any. Puel had a similar quality 1st team but a stronger squad (and had no direction - exactly the reason Leicester got rid as well). I also think playing games so quickly is having a negative effect - the automisms need constant training as does opposition study and conditioning. Yes it’s the same for all clubs but for us having such a strict system it’s having a bigger effect (you could blame Ralph having no plan B but he’s trying to do things a very set way)

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1 hour ago, S-Clarke said:

There were some highlights, no denying that. But whilst we beat Inter, we pissed away a decent opportunity to actually progress against Hapoel at home and Sparta away. The lack of ambition at home to Hapoel was crazy. Two seasons we cocked up Europe, very frustrating. 

It just didn't feel right, some players came to the fore in spite of Puel....but it just didn't seem the right fit from the word go. I didn't enjoy that season as much as the previous 5 or 6 and it was all a bit downhill from there. We should have replaced Koeman with someone able to carry the momentum, we just floundered after that and in truth, bar last season, have never really recovered from that appointment and the recruitment which was forthcoming.

Give me lockdown over a year of Puel any day.

Edited by Whitey Grandad
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Honestly believe that if we dont find a new owner by the summer then relegation is a strong possibility next season. With Gao wanting to sell (and get as good a price as he can), we will likely see little to no investment in the summer window (hence the reference that we're looking to take advantage of the free transfer market). Also no guarantee that money from any sales will be equally reinvested. You cant stand still in this league for too long and hope to be ok.

That being said, if our owners try and push through a sale without conducting due diligence on prospective parties, we could end up with some joker like DaGrosa or be saddled with large debt like Burnleys recent takeover.

Among the 5 parties interested, there surely must be one who genuinely wants to invest and push the club forward 🙏🏼

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22 minutes ago, woodsaint1 said:

Honestly believe that if we dont find a new owner by the summer then relegation is a strong possibility next season. With Gao wanting to sell (and get as good a price as he can), we will likely see little to no investment in the summer window (hence the reference that we're looking to take advantage of the free transfer market). Also no guarantee that money from any sales will be equally reinvested. You cant stand still in this league for too long and hope to be ok.

That being said, if our owners try and push through a sale without conducting due diligence on prospective parties, we could end up with some joker like DaGrosa or be saddled with large debt like Burnleys recent takeover.

Among the 5 parties interested, there surely must be one who genuinely wants to invest and push the club forward 🙏🏼

I think I speak for most in saying that I wouldn't want a zillionaire to turn us into City or anything crazy like that.

I just want an owner who has as a clear philosophy and plan for the club, just like the manager with the first team, and is able to support the manager and provide some flexibility in moulding the squad how he sees fit in a sustainable way.

What we're doing at the moment is unsustainable to the other extreme. Like you said, you can't stand still in this league for long.

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I think people dislike Puel because they didn't like being bored to tears watching utterly depressing football with a talented squad. I think people like Ralph because his teams play exciting football and try to win games and score goals, albeit with less talent in the squad. 

Now that Ralph's style is starting to come undone it'll be interesting to see how people's opinions of Ralph change. Let's not pretend Puel was some "world class manager" to quote a certain poster on here, just because Ralph's team isn't doing well.

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12 minutes ago, AlexLaw76 said:

Looks like Puel was actually better than Hassenhutl 

 

never thought I would say that 

There are people on this forum wittering about how we are in the relegation scrap who think we can't get the 36 points achieved by Pellegrino and Hughes. So they're saying Ralph is worse than those two, let alone 46 point, 8th place Puel.

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7 hours ago, S-Clarke said:

I think I speak for most in saying that I wouldn't want a zillionaire to turn us into City or anything crazy like that.

I just want an owner who has as a clear philosophy and plan for the club, just like the manager with the first team, and is able to support the manager and provide some flexibility in moulding the squad how he sees fit in a sustainable way.

What we're doing at the moment is unsustainable to the other extreme. Like you said, you can't stand still in this league for long.

I doubt there's anyone who wouldn't agree with you. The difficulty is why would anyone throw north of a £100m to buy us, then tens of millions a year thereafter to keep is going? They'll probably never get back. In the current economic climate, I just don't see it, and why would anyone in business, wanting a return in the future, do that? 

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3 minutes ago, CB Fry said:

There are people on this forum wittering about how we are in the relegation scrap who think we can't get the 36 points achieved by Pellegrino and Hughes. So they're saying Ralph is worse than those two, let alone 46 point, 8th place Puel.

Nobody has said that Ralph is worse than Hughes and Pellegrino! If we don't get much than 36 points this season, it'd be hard to argue that Ralphs performance this season is better than anything that either of those 2 did. 

Puel. He was better than many give him credit for. Forget comparisons with others, 8th place, and a cup final, was a decent return. 

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After the January Puel had Jack Stephens and Yoshida as centre halves. Bertrand, Pied and Cedric as full backs. JWP, OR and Steve Davies, JRod, Long, Gabbi, Redmond and Tadic. He had to use Josh Simms and McQueen and had a very young PEH. Is that really any better than we’ve got now. I’d say only Tadic would get in this side, maybe Steve Davies. That lot managed to win a semi final and win 6 of their last remaining 13 games. They also never got stuffed 9. And we never looked a complete shambles as we have done at times this season.

My opinion has always been the same regarding Claude. He did a good job in difficult circumstances, whilst I wasn’t 100% sure of him, he deserved another season. He suffered a raw deal from most supporters, including the unbelievable claim that points matter more than places (a calculation which means Liverpool’s runners up had a better season than Arsenals invincible’s). Under him we were the 8th best team in the country, and with the squad we had that’s a pretty good return.
 

Puels achievements are derided and he’s lumped in with Pelligrino and Hughes, he deserves better than that. This blokes achievements have been  exaggerated big time. 11th is par for us, unless he does something in the cup, this looks like it’s going to be another bang average return this season. 

Edited by Lord Duckhunter
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5 minutes ago, egg said:

Nobody has said that Ralph is worse than Hughes and Pellegrino! If we don't get much than 36 points this season, it'd be hard to argue that Ralphs performance this season is better than anything that either of those 2 did. 

Not sure what you're arguing to be honest. Anyone who genuinely thinks we may get relegated automatically believes Ralph can't get the 36 points that Hughes finished the season on having picked up from Pellegrino. 

That is a pretty damning assessment of Ralph especially as this is two and half years into his project.

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Just now, CB Fry said:

Not sure what you're arguing to be honest. Anyone who genuinely thinks we may get relegated automatically believes Ralph can't get the 36 points that Hughes finished the season on having picked up from Pellegrino. 

That is a pretty damning assessment of Ralph especially as this is two and half years into his project.

Your argument was that people are "saying Ralph is worse than those two, let alone 46 point, 8th place Puel" 

Nobody has said that Ralph. He isn't. However, if we finish with a points tally starting with a 3 then he hasn't done any better this season than those guys did. 

 

 

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9 minutes ago, egg said:

Your argument was that people are "saying Ralph is worse than those two, let alone 46 point, 8th place Puel" 

Nobody has said that Ralph. He isn't. However, if we finish with a points tally starting with a 3 then he hasn't done any better this season than those guys did. 

 

 

Yes, in the context of comparisons with Puel (8th, 46 points) - we've gone below that in the minds of some, already: there's people shitting themselves about relegation (not many, and they're fucking idiots, but they're there) whose ambition is now Pellegrino levels.

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10 hours ago, LuckyNumber7 said:

Ultimately final position is what matters, but it certainly needs to be looked at in the context of points accrued as well. More points = more wins regardless of how the table shapes up around you. The 8th place under Puel was an anomoly and more to do with other teams being so poor rather than Saints being good.

That old mantra eh? Saints (and Puel in particular) only ever beat poor teams. Wake up!

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23 hours ago, SuperSAINT said:

Come the summer Southampton, like many clubs of their size, believe a strong free agent market will work to their benefit.

The only interesting part of the article.

Who wants to do the work and find out which players are out of contract in the summer? Goalkeeper, Left Back, Utility Full Back, Wide Attacker, Striker (x2?).

I'd bet Walcott will be one of those.

Weren't we linked to some journeyman Brazilian midfielder a few weeks back who was available on a free? Perhaps there was some truth to that rumour...

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