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Norwich 2-1 Saints - Match Thread


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1 hour ago, gallaghert366@yahoo.com said:

I posted this in August:

"If anyone thinks that Adams and Armstrong will provide enough goals for The Saints to stay in the Premiership then I suggest they need a reality check."

I've seen nothing, so far, to make me change my opinion.

I'm not saying they won't score goals, I just don't see much interplay between the two. Armstrong is very like Ings, in that he can dribble and shoot and doesn't need chances laid on a plate -  he can make things happen himself. Che does need someone creating them for him. Maybe Armstrong will do that, but I am not sure. I think over the course of the season Broja, Redmond and Tella etc. will need to chip in too.

 

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2 minutes ago, Chez said:

I'm not saying they won't score goals, I just don't see much interplay between the two. Armstrong is very like Ings, in that he can dribble and shoot and doesn't need chances laid on a plate -  he can make things happen himself. Che does need someone creating them for him. Maybe Armstrong will do that, but I am not sure. I think over the course of the season Broja, Redmond and Tella etc. will need to chip in too.

 

Weird you say that, as the 4 goals they have scored combined this season I'm pretty sure like 3 of them were assisted by the other (4 out of 5 if the Che goal wasn't given as an OG at united)

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2 hours ago, nta786 said:

I think the balanced view is today's result isn't purely down to Macca in goal, but Ralph should take a fair share of the blame too.

Yes McCarthy could have done better, defenders could have marked better and we could go on for days.

My criticism for Ralph is more to do with the game management today- what is he seeing in Walcott, why isn't Tella playing, why is our attacking "automatisms" failing this season? Unfortunately, our wins cannot always be 1-0, we don't have the defence of 2014-15/2015-16 to manage that.

I'm not calling for his head, but just stating what was observed today. 

Add to the fact yet again, after half time we were nowhere near as dominant. Even in our wins this happens, is this because other managers improve their team at half or does Ralph make ours worse? Either way it’s obvious what will happen in every game, we are never as good second half.

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4 minutes ago, richard799 said:

Alex McCarthy has absolutely awful distribution in my opinion, having gone to most home matches, I watch in horror at the number of times the ball has gone directly to the opposition from a throw or kick. Yes, he has made some superb reflex saves, but this is what he is paid to do and what we should expect of a PL goalkeeper. It is now high time that Ralph gave FF a decent run in the team, he did well when he had the better defence in front of him with record number of clean sheets, and whilst he may not match this with the current defence in front of him, it is high time to give him a chance. I'm fed up with the ball going to the opposition putting out side under unnecessary pressure.

Yep, McCarthys distribution ain't great. But is Fosters any better?  Both make me nervous when they get the ball. Mind you, I'm not sure what keeper wouldn't. I can live with the ball being turned over if its a safety first strategy. Just kicking the thing in the rough direction of a Saint would be nice. I have to say the decision making has been better this season. Far from perfect, but keepers have not put fullbacks and centrebacks in trouble as much as last season.

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30 minutes ago, TWar said:

Weird you say that, as the 4 goals they have scored combined this season I'm pretty sure like 3 of them were assisted by the other (4 out of 5 if the Che goal wasn't given as an OG at united)

you are absolutely right. Three of the four goals were assists by the other. It would be good to know how may chances in total they have created for each other in the 12 league games.

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4 hours ago, LuckyNumber7 said:

Really poor second half (again)!

Tbh I think we really missed Redmond and Stu and even Djenepo as playing Diallo further forward didn't really work. Problem then was Theo was our only 'ten' on the bench and sadly he's just not up to it any more.

McCarthy really poor for both goals. No-one played well, nice goal from Che aside. Bad day at the office

Really did miss that trio you mention.  As much as I like Diallo, he was played out of position, and it showed.   With Elyounoussi playing poorly it meant our front pair had to work off scraps or long balls in, especially since both our FBs were less effective today.   There's no way round it, McCarthy was poor today, with both those near post goals very saveable....shades of Kelvin Davis.    It was inexplicable that Walcott was brought on instead of someone like Tella.   Romeu coming off was also questionable, though I don't think Ralph should be criticised too much.    Norwich were much the more intense, high pressure team in the 2nd half - a draw would have been a fair result.    

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25 minutes ago, MAY-Z said:

Add to the fact yet again, after half time we were nowhere near as dominant. Even in our wins this happens, is this because other managers improve their team at half or does Ralph make ours worse? Either way it’s obvious what will happen in every game, we are never as good second half.

It is baffling why we are so poor after the break so often. Not sure how a manager makes a team worse at half time. I'd of thought they'd be identifying areas weaknesses and addressing them during the break. In general, the momentum is lost by the interval and opponents make a few changes which changes the dynamics. 

That said, since these mangers have started standing up on the sideline shouting bollocks for all ninety minutes their powers to control a game of football have gone off the scale in fans eyes. Managers don't play the game. They can do a bit, adjust the shape, make some subs, but a large percentage of what happens on the pitch is still down to the players. Managers are important, but they are not miracle workers.

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11 minutes ago, austsaint said:

Really did miss that trio you mention.  As much as I like Diallo, he was played out of position, and it showed.   With Elyounoussi playing poorly it meant our front pair had to work off scraps or long balls in, especially since both our FBs were less effective today.   There's no way round it, McCarthy was poor today, with both those near post goals very saveable....shades of Kelvin Davis.    It was inexplicable that Walcott was brought on instead of someone like Tella.   Romeu coming off was also questionable, though I don't think Ralph should be criticised too much.    Norwich were much the more intense, high pressure team in the 2nd half - a draw would have been a fair result.    

Diallo was bad in the second half. Gave the ball away several times with poor passes and holding onto the ball too long. I'd of taken him off rather than Romeu.

Walcott was brought on to play the `fast' striker (moving Armstrong to left midfield/wing). Is Walcott still quick? If not, then why is Tella not getting that role? I am not gonna slate Walcott, there's enough people on here doing that, but Tella showed promise last season. I'd of thought we'd of seen a few cameos of the bench by now.

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Just got back, not reading any of the posts above because I can predict the normal arguments after that result.

First half we were so far the better team. Silly goal to let in, everyone there was convinced there was a foul in the build up but I haven't seen a replay.

Second half they cut off the passing lanes we'd been so successful with and denied our full backs the space they had lots of in the first hakf. We then struggled to create anything until Walcott's terrible headed miss near the end.

Some might not agree but I thought we missed Redmond today. Also we really could have done with Stuart Armstrong because without those two we had very little in attacking midfield and lacked the ability to have people running with the ball to take play up the pitch. Add into that some very indifferent passing and 2 poor pieces of goalkeeping and we basically gifted a poor team 3 points.

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8 minutes ago, Chez said:

It is baffling why we are so poor after the break so often. Not sure how a manager makes a team worse at half time. I'd of thought they'd be identifying areas weaknesses and addressing them during the break. In general, the momentum is lost by the interval and opponents make a few changes which changes the dynamics.

It was eerily similar to Watford away. We were totally dominant in the first half, and then almost overrun in the second. The only difference was that, somehow, Watford didn't score. Chez, I'm not sure that the issue is "identifying areas weaknesses and addressing them during the break" because we didn't really have many in the first halves of those games. We'd been well on top and should have been several goals ahead.

The issue is more Ralph's inability to respond effectively to the opposition's game-changing adjustments. It's almost like he's pre-planned his substitutions and is going to make them come hell or high water.

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2 minutes ago, Chez said:

Diallo was bad in the second half. Gave the ball away several times with poor passes and holding onto the ball too long. I'd of taken him off rather than Romeu.

Walcott was brought on to play the `fast' striker (moving Armstrong to left midfield/wing). Is Walcott still quick? If not, then why is Tella not getting that role? I am not gonna slate Walcott, there's enough people on here doing that, but Tella showed promise last season. I'd of thought we'd of seen a few cameos of the bench by now.

When Walcott came on I thought he'd go on the left and leave Armstrong through the middle. I can't work out why that didn't happen.

I thought Walcott was very poor. Bad control, awful crosses that generally seemed to get blocked by the first man and the missed header at the end was dismal.

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His comments after the game were just a vague non-sensical ramble. We have an average squad, a very poor keeper, and in Walcott possibly the worst player in the PL league history who for some reason keeps getting game time ahead of Tella for example who is a much better prospect. The team hasn't made any progress at all under RH, none whatsoever. It's gonna be a long dismal season.

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2 hours ago, CanadaSaint said:

It was eerily similar to Watford away. We were totally dominant in the first half, and then almost overrun in the second. The only difference was that, somehow, Watford didn't score. Chez, I'm not sure that the issue is "identifying areas weaknesses and addressing them during the break" because we didn't really have many in the first halves of those games. We'd been well on top and should have been several goals ahead.

The issue is more Ralph's inability to respond effectively to the opposition's game-changing adjustments. It's almost like he's pre-planned his substitutions and is going to make them come hell or high water.

sure, what I was trying to say (in response to a post wondering "what does Ralph do to make us worse) is, I don't really know how a manager can make you worse by his half time team talk. It's all about what the opponent does. 

To be fair to Ralph, he has reacted well in the last month to when we have looked in trouble. He has made sub and changed shapes pretty quickly and sometimes to good effect. Last season he did nothing, maybe because he had no bench

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2 hours ago, The Cat said:

When Walcott came on I thought he'd go on the left and leave Armstrong through the middle. I can't work out why that didn't happen.

I thought Walcott was very poor. Bad control, awful crosses that generally seemed to get blocked by the first man and the missed header at the end was dismal.

Walcott wasn't dismal. He just wasn't any good, but he is getting far too much stick. I guess we need a whipping boy. If he was starting games I'd be moaning too probably, but for now, him coming of the bench is not the worst thing in the world. I get the impression he is still feeing his way back after what was quite a long injury. Whether he ever gets back to a player that can provide a threat at thus level I am not sure.

equally, I thought Armstrong did well on the left, finding some nice pockets of space and cause them a few problems.

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Standard Saints.

We scrape a few wins against the worst teams in the league.

We perform well in the first half yet can't achieve anything. We play players out of position. 

Second half we get random substitutions and completely fail to counter the opposition .

Ralph seems confused how we lose again.

Ralph is the problem. Fans biting at each other on here just makes it more amusing.

 

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26 minutes ago, Chez said:

sure, what I was trying to say (in response to a post wondering "what does Ralph do to make us worse) is, I don't really know how a manager can make you worse by his half time team talk. It's all about what the opponent does. 

To be fair to Ralph, he has reacted well in the last month to when we have looked in trouble. He has made sub and changed shapes pretty quickly and sometimes to good effect. Last season he did nothing, maybe because he had no bench

I don’t know how he does it either, but it happens basically every game so obviously something goes wrong. Very wrong.

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33 minutes ago, MAY-Z said:

I don’t know how he does it either, but it happens basically every game so obviously something goes wrong. Very wrong.

Obviously I'm not in the dressing room, but my guess is he says "ok boys, great first half, now conserve your energy and drop a bit deeper as we expect the opposition to up the tempo. Oh BTW I will bring on some unusual substitutions to fool the opposition so don't worry if you're hoicked off - nothing personal you understand" Added to the oppo manager working out our/Ralphs tactics and countering.

I have always maintained Ralph is limited and maybe that is the best we can hope for, but with Ralph we will only ever average at or around relegation 

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Worth a mentioning the officials. 

Norwich scored their winner from a corner. Saints missed out on 2 additional corners, (only won 4) that were wrongly given as goal kicks. Thought there were quite a lot of the small decisions that went against us that make add up to make the difference.

Probably just sour grapes though.

Edited by st alex
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A couple of points:

He has improved our defence considerably but Salisu is a long way from being the world classs defender some people think. Whilst not exonerating McCarthy , Salisu could have been much tighter on Pukki for the first goal. His distribution is also rather erratic. Against Villa he twice needlessly put McCarthy under pressure by passing short and again today he seemed to be the weak link when the defence was passing amongst themselves. 

When was the last time that we conceded from a corner? I may be wrong, but I thought it was some time ago. 

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5 hours ago, skintsaint said:

I'll keep this brief.

* how we lost that I don't know. Norwich were wank.

* Both goals should have been routine saves for a decent gk.

* as soon as Walcott came on we were playing with 10 men.

 

What a ridiculous first comment! You clearly answered the question with full marks in point 2&3.

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11 hours ago, TWar said:

Weird you say that, as the 4 goals they have scored combined this season I'm pretty sure like 3 of them were assisted by the other (4 out of 5 if the Che goal wasn't given as an OG at united)

How can you say we were the better team?  What we had more passes or touches or…..

we played great in first half. We were badly prepared for Norwich in the second half and the changes they made. Ralph made some very strange changes which made things worse and yes there were again some personal errors. 
 

All this can be forgiven as all teams have off days…. This second half was not an exception, it’s what we do and haven’t managed to change. It also will continue unless we address the issues that underpin these things.  
 

I voice this as it’s frustrating as F and I see and feel it happening and know how it will end 

its like watching Groundhog Day 

 

 

Edited by saint michael
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22 minutes ago, saint michael said:

Ralph made some very strange changes which made things worse

 

 

is that true. First 20 of second half we were shite, Norwich dominated and the 11 on the pitch were not doing their job. I didn't see any significant improvement after any of the changes to personnel or shape, but we weren't worse.You could argue that other changes might have made a better impact, but we will never know.

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8 hours ago, Kermitzasaint said:

3 wins against the worst teams in the league. A little perspective 

My worry as well.  I'm struggling to see which teams we will pick up points from, I just don't think we have the fire power to get us enough goals if we need to score more than one to win.  Mid table we may be at the moment, but I think our momentum is about to go south very quickly. We threw 3 very important points away yesterday. 

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8 hours ago, Chez said:

Walcott wasn't dismal. He just wasn't any good, but he is getting far too much stick. I guess we need a whipping boy. If he was starting games I'd be moaning too probably, but for now, him coming of the bench is not the worst thing in the world. I get the impression he is still feeing his way back after what was quite a long injury. Whether he ever gets back to a player that can provide a threat at thus level I am not sure.

equally, I thought Armstrong did well on the left, finding some nice pockets of space and cause them a few problems.

Yep. We didn't lose that game because of Walcott. We lost it because we didn't take our 1st half chances, and because McCarthy is shit. That said, why he came in I'm unsure - Tella or even Smallbone would have given us more. 

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26 minutes ago, Chez said:

is that true. First 20 of second half we were shite, Norwich dominated and the 11 on the pitch were not doing their job. I didn't see any significant improvement after any of the changes to personnel or shape, but we weren't worse.You could argue that other changes might have made a better impact, but we will never know.

Fair enough. I just knew what Norwich would do second half and we looked unprepared… again. It doesn’t seem to be fitness. First half movement and organisation good. Just Norwich pushed higher and longer ball and we collapse. That’s tactical. Then some changes that I personally found bizarre again and others might find ok. 

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8 hours ago, Chez said:

Walcott wasn't dismal. He just wasn't any good, but he is getting far too much stick. I guess we need a whipping boy. If he was starting games I'd be moaning too probably, but for now, him coming of the bench is not the worst thing in the world. I get the impression he is still feeing his way back after what was quite a long injury. Whether he ever gets back to a player that can provide a threat at thus level I am not sure.

equally, I thought Armstrong did well on the left, finding some nice pockets of space and cause them a few problems.

I didn't say he was dismal, that was referring to the header. He was very poor though. It's so frustrating to see someone who used to be so good and who everyone wants to do well fading away in front of our eyes.

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Mcarthy. That useless shite has only got 5 clean sheets in 12 games.

First goal was poor play by KWP being weak on the ball and loosing possession, leaving us exposed down the left, Romeu then not closing down the cross on the cover and Salisu not challenging the man he's marking. But yeah the GK not saving a shot from point blank is the reason we were beat.

EDIT: watched the highlights - Mcarthy should have saved both, still doesn't exonerate the other poor play that led to the first goal. He has also had games this season where he hasn't been bad.

Edited by st alex
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S.N.A.F.U ...again !

We were the only team in it for the first 45, then we melted and came away with the only positive stat. of  63% possession.

We had 12 shots to 1 in the first half, yet managed only 1 goal.  It's even worse when considering that in the last 5 Prem. fixtures 

we have had 73 shots ...and managed just 6 goals. 

Some more dubious refereeing decisions (and I can't be fined £20 grand for my comments).... Where was VAR when you needed it ?

 

I really have tried to think positively about the prospect of having Alex McCarthy as no.1 keeper next season, but it just won't wash.

If Forster must go.... I'd rather that we bought TWO new keepers before deciding to give AM a new 3 year contract. 

It's hard not to blame him for both goals yesterday.

Now we've got over our recent  "easy"  fixtures against bottom-end sides, the next 5-6  games will truly reflect our real Prem. ranking.

 

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2 minutes ago, M271 said:

Has anyone seen the reason why Adams and Romeo were substituted? If they weren't injured or fatigued then it was a bad decision IMO.

Che Adams had two tough games for Scotland and surely tired quicker as the game developed.   I'm afraid none of the subs. worked out very well.

Romeu is beginning to show his age, and the game had started to get away from us after HT.   Lyanco DAJFU, but it was a goalscorer we needed.

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1 hour ago, musesaint said:

We will win more games when McCarthy is finally dropped and Forster is back in goal 

It's not gonna happen, not with Ralph in charge. 

Seems the excuse is FF not signing a new contract although that issue didnt arise last year when it was Ings.  

Edited by beatlesaint
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33 minutes ago, beatlesaint said:

It's not gonna happen, not with Ralph in charge. 

Seems the excuse is FF not signing a new contract although that issue didnt arise last year when it was Ings.  

It isn't a good comparison between FF and Ings. There was a contract offer on the table for Ings and there appeared to be (mistaken) confidence in the club that he would sign. It wasn't until July that it was confirmed that he had rejected the offer, so no possibility to drop Ings. 

 

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I know it's just one game but I'm still annoyed about the manner of our pathetic second half  display, time and time again we seem to come out with a completely casual attitude to the second 45, is it not RH's job to fire us up at half time? to get us solid defensively when in a lead, whatever he says to us at half time more than often makes us worse & time and time again he reverts back to crazy subs mode.  I agree the keeper has to take a portion of the blame too, basically neither keepers is anywhere near good enough.  Walcott would be finished under any other manager yet he will be picked again, elounousi Is just another no end product player to add to our list that flatters to deceive. 

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