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Saints 2-2 Leicester - Match Thread


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I’m pretty happy with a point, I don’t think it was a game where we were great and just wasted the points - I thought we had spells, but definitely not as good as we have been at times this season.

Think he could’ve done better with the first goal possibly, although slightly unsighted and unlucky, but thought McCarthy had a good game - world class save from Barnes’ chance.
 

Redmond was great first half. 
 

To me the problem is, and always has been, lack of chance creation from midfield. As much as our forwards seem to lack goals, they really don’t get many clear chances. There was a great opportunity to slide Adams through quickly in the second half but Romeu hesitated and played it out wide instead - someone like Maddison just slips that through and we’re in. Obviously they’re completely different players, but for me we don’t have a Maddison in the whole squad and probably haven’t since Tadic left. It’s why we never saw the best of Gabbiadini (i know him and Tadic overlapped briefly), no one reading the movement early enough. 

Overall, a decent result.

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10 hours ago, spyinthesky said:

Have to disagree with you on this. McCarthy's first reaction save was excellent just a shame it rebounded straight to Evans.

The second save when Barnes went through was world class.

I thought overall McCarthy had a very decent game

Tosh!  See what you want to see.

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Thought it was an ok performance, but how many times have Saints played very well in the first half and been hanging on in the second? There's no point being a good team for only half a match...

Thought Adams played very well and JWP, Redmond (first half) and Salisu also pretty good. Livramento exciting going forwards, but again looked knackered near the end and probably time to get KWP back in at right back who at the moment is a better right back (and probably one of our best 3 or 4 players). I'd be keen to see Perraud again, as we weren't cutting down that left side very efficiently with our right footers. Thierry Small also looks like he could be really good in a year or two...

Shout to Elyounoussi who looked pretty good when he came on. One common thing was there were about 3 or 4 occasions when we were breaking and our players seemed very reluctant to play in other players on the break who were in better positions...

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8 minutes ago, disconnect said:

Thought it was an ok performance, but how many times have Saints played very well in the first half and been hanging on in the second? There's no point being a good team for only half a match...

Thought Adams played very well and JWP, Redmond (first half) and Salisu also pretty good. Livramento exciting going forwards, but again looked knackered near the end and probably time to get KWP back in at right back who at the moment is a better right back (and probably one of our best 3 or 4 players). I'd be keen to see Perraud again, as we weren't cutting down that left side very efficiently with our right footers. Thierry Small also looks like he could be really good in a year or two...

Shout to Elyounoussi who looked pretty good when he came on. One common thing was there were about 3 or 4 occasions when we were breaking and our players seemed very reluctant to play in other players on the break who were in better positions...

I don't think we were 'hanging on' in the second half at all, it was just more even after our first half dominance. Leicester had some decent chances to win it but it's not like we were camped in our own half under siege. We had plenty of attacks of our own. 

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4 minutes ago, saintwbu said:

To me the problem is, and always has been, lack of chance creation from midfield. As much as our forwards seem to lack goals, they really don’t get many clear chances. There was a great opportunity to slide Adams through quickly in the second half but Romeu hesitated and played it out wide instead - someone like Maddison just slips that through and we’re in. Obviously they’re completely different players, but for me we don’t have a Maddison in the whole squad and probably haven’t since Tadic left. It’s why we never saw the best of Gabbiadini (i know him and Tadic overlapped briefly), no one reading the movement early enough. 

There was a run by JWP in the first half that fizzled out, another burst from Romeu, who hardly ever gives it away, but when he got into the congested third, the important through ball/pass was easily intercepted and the chance was gone. Both players are great at keeping the game moving, but we do lack that little extra guile. Sight;y unfair to compare them to Maddison, as they play in different roles, we actually need Armstrong, Redmond and Ely to do what Maddison did last night, beat men and smash it in. 

I think there were other occasions too when a break was on, but the pass was fractionally behind, or the touch wasn't spot on and momentum and opportunity was lost. I think that is another area where we are weak: the quick break. In those circumstances the pass needs to be weighted perfectly, the first touches brilliant and the players need to be on top of their game and brimming with confidence to just do things instinctively. That ain't there right now. 

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13 minutes ago, DT said:

Perhaps he was a little unsighted. But also, perhaps he's just not Prem standard. Would be middling in Championship. We need better, desperately

I agree with the vast majority on here, McCarthy should have done better. However in the rush to condemn him, I haven't seen any comments about the abysmal clearing header from Salisu which didn't clear the penalty area and dropped fairly central to the goal; a half decent clearance at that point would have meant that we wouldn't now be debating McCarthy's inadequacies. 

Salisu is a good player and I suspect that he won't be with us for long. He is young and still improving. However, like any young player he makes mistakes and isn't the finished article yet.

I hope for both Saints sake and his own that he doesn't rush off to join a bigger club too quickly where expectations and attention will be much higher.

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There is no club that more flatters to deceive than the current Saints and it's been the same old story for three years. That so many on here are elated and grateful that we battled our way to "a stunning draw against Leicester" tells us all we need to know.

We are not going forward, we are going going backwards, we are stuck in the middle. Seeing the same old patterns of play with the same old outcomes week after week is switching me off big time and my expectations - like no doubt many others - are now rock bottom.

Individual errors again cost us the win last night it seems that our current crop of players are either incapable of understanding their own shortcomings and addressing them or they are so brain washed by 'the system' that they have stopped thinking for themselves altogether and play as automatons.

A very unsatisfactory evening all round.

 

Edited by Charlie Wayman
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16 minutes ago, saintwbu said:

To me the problem is, and always has been, lack of chance creation from midfield. As much as our forwards seem to lack goals, they really don’t get many clear chances. There was a great opportunity to slide Adams through quickly in the second half but Romeu hesitated and played it out wide instead - someone like Maddison just slips that through and we’re in. Obviously they’re completely different players, but for me we don’t have a Maddison in the whole squad and probably haven’t since Tadic left. It’s why we never saw the best of Gabbiadini (i know him and Tadic overlapped briefly), no one reading the movement early enough. 

 

We said the same during the game last night;  the lack of vision/execution in slipping players through has been an issue for a while.  I actually feel a little sorry for Armstrong as he does make good runs but is very rarely seen (or seen too late) so his runs are in vain and probably add to his overall frustration. 

After a new goalie, a creative number 10 would be high on my shopping list. 

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10 hours ago, Chez said:

Could not agree more.

Annoys me when people slate keepers for being beaten at the near post. It's like, allowing a goal in that side is 100 times worse than letting it in the other or something. Yes you need to get you angles right, but the goal is fucking massive when they are shooting at it from 6 yards out. He wasn't to blame at all for the second IMO. Livramento on the other hand. Jesus. The lad has a lot to learn about defending and positional play

Exactly this, not every "near post" shot is one that a GK should definitely save, it was blasted from about 4 yards out. Macca got a little unlucky with the first as well, he never had much time to react and where the ball hit him dictated where the parry was going to go, it would've been classed as a good save had it not fallen straight to Evans IMO.

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37 minutes ago, Chez said:

To be fair, the shot was from well inside the box and there are two Saints defenders in front of him, so may not have had a clear view.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j0uiLKvRNEY

I agree it was not a very powerful shot, but it didn't dribble to him either. He parried it. I thought he may have been able to grab it. It ain't great, but I doubt players were pointing fingers either. It's not as though they don't make mistakes themselves. They all do and sometimes they lead to goals being conceded, sometimes they don't. 

As for moral, I should imagine when he makes a save like he did versus Barnes, they are very grateful that he has helped earn the side a point.

Yeah, I’ve looked at it again and it’s a couple of yards inside but ‘from the edge of the area’ is how I remembered it. Low down and slightly to his right and bounced once on the way but a routine gather for a goalkeeper. He somehow manages to spoon the ball out to his left. 
 

I look at it this way. If I had been standing there in my prime as a full back I would have had no trouble booting the ball into the stands on the right.

 

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10 hours ago, Chez said:

Could not agree more.

Annoys me when people slate keepers for being beaten at the near post. It's like, allowing a goal in that side is 100 times worse than letting it in the other or something. Yes you need to get you angles right, but the goal is fucking massive when they are shooting at it from 6 yards out. He wasn't to blame at all for the second IMO. Livramento on the other hand. Jesus. The lad has a lot to learn about defending and positional play

From where we were sat we had a clear view from behind the shot and there was a very tight slot for Maddison to hit, only a couple of inches on either side. Tina was getting turned over all evening and Maddison had plenty of space to run into unchallenged. Near post or not he had a good chance to score. The defenders’ job is to cover or block the far post shots but McCarthy was too exposed. My view was foreshortened so it looked easier than it was.

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19 minutes ago, CAH61 said:

Exactly this, not every "near post" shot is one that a GK should definitely save, it was blasted from about 4 yards out. Macca got a little unlucky with the first as well, he never had much time to react and where the ball hit him dictated where the parry was going to go, it would've been classed as a good save had it not fallen straight to Evans IMO.

I agree with the first part, some keepers could have saved it, but it wasnt easy, and was hit hard from close range.

The first goal though, whilst it could have gone anywhere, was poor imo - keepers basic jobs are to push the ball to the sides, which is a ‘safer’ area of the goal threat - regardless of seeing that late, he put it back in the danger area - was a mistake, and down to him. I cant call the first save as good as it was right at him - I’d expected every keeper to make the first save, but not push it out where it came from.

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Just now, cloggy saint said:

The ball came to him around his midriff, there was no way he or anyone could have pushed it to the side from that position. Any other time the ball could have rebounded to a defender and it would go down as a decent save.

Fair enough, i can see why some think that, I just think he could have done better. I’m not even blaming him for us dropping points or anything like that.

Other than this incident, thought he was actually ok, made a great save near the end, and it isn’t like we have a prime Lev Yashin on the bench waiting to take over.

I’d stick with Alex going forward until we buy a new No 1. Sticking Fraser in really isn’t going to suddenly generate much of a different performance.

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Seems many varied reactions to McCarthy's performances, yet much is made of the good saves he makes,

but maybe people should remember that a goalkeeper is paid good money to be there and make great saves,

but there should be a better analysis of how goals are conceded.

Saints have concede 8 goals in the last 3 games and the majority of those can surely be put down to " keeper error ". 

 

Ever since he arrived there have been comments about McCarthy's propensity to concede goals at his near post, and

it's something that the coaching staff have seemingly failed to cure him of. 

As long as he is at the club, we must accept that AM will be Ralph's first choice and as soon as Fraser Forster leaves the club

his successor will suffer the same fate, and become " a permanent bench player" . 

It has been said that a keeper - is only as good as the defence in front of him - but (as now ) that is not always the case.

 

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11 hours ago, Bob76 said:

Thought the first half was as good as we have been for a while.

I think it's time to give Tino a rest, I also think that was Armstrong's worst game, never got into it.

I think we need to rethink keeping everyone back at corners, cost us the first goal as the ball just came straight back at is.

We also need to get tougher/cleverer, loads of times they broke up or attacks with fouls, that the crap referee never punished, we really need to start doing this someone should have taken Madison out on his run up field.

Lastly buy a new keeper in Jan please.

100% on the tougher/cleverer point. We just don’t seem to be able to “play” to a refs strengths / weaknesses, whereas other teams & especially Leicester last eve worked out on the edge, niggly fouls weren’t going to get punished. Wise up Ralph. 

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1 hour ago, cloggy saint said:

The ball came to him around his midriff, there was no way he or anyone could have pushed it to the side from that position. Any other time the ball could have rebounded to a defender and it would go down as a decent save.

I’m sorry, completely disagree. Any decent premier league GK deals with that in a much better way. Wouldn’t have regarded it as a decent save at all, if he lets that in it’s a complete and utter shocker, he barely had to move.

Its a shame as other than that, he did ok. But that’s the difference between relegation battles and comfortable mid table.

We ambled along with Paul Jones for a few years, but when Niemi was signed we went up 2-3 levels. Hoping we can do something similar in January. 

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2 hours ago, WALK DMC said:

I agree with the vast majority on here, McCarthy should have done better. However in the rush to condemn him, I haven't seen any comments about the abysmal clearing header from Salisu which didn't clear the penalty area and dropped fairly central to the goal; a half decent clearance at that point would have meant that we wouldn't now be debating McCarthy's inadequacies. 

Salisu is a good player and I suspect that he won't be with us for long. He is young and still improving. However, like any young player he makes mistakes and isn't the finished article yet.

I hope for both Saints sake and his own that he doesn't rush off to join a bigger club too quickly where expectations and attention will be much higher.

Must admit, that was my thoughts on the first goal as well.  Salisu sees the ball coming, he can also see Tella (I think) free on the corner edge of the box and a clearing header to him, or just in front of him puts us on the break. That would be heading the ball back at a narrower angle and further away from the goal but instead he heads it at a wider angle into the centre of the goal. Just my opinion, but I think he could do better there.

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McCarthy is the new whipping boy, and I do agree he’s at best bottom 5 keepers in the league, but some of the criticism is ott. The first - yes a top keeper might have claimed or pushed wide but it was far from easy, the second he had no chance - not sure who blames a gk when a striker is shooting unopposed at him from 5 yards. Meanwhile he made a world class save from Barnes and did very well against Vardy for the 1 v 1 - didn’t go down early, rushed at right time and made himself big. He’s had a few bad games but yesterday wasn’t one of them.

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I'd love to know what Ralph says at half time. It's as if he says job done lads and hands them all a pint because we completely fall off a cliff in the second half of nearly every game. Leicester were there to be beat imo and we bottled it. 

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27 minutes ago, Shance said:

I'd love to know what Ralph says at half time. It's as if he says job done lads and hands them all a pint because we completely fall off a cliff in the second half of nearly every game. Leicester were there to be beat imo and we bottled it. 

I don’t think the players are able to mentally focus on their shape and the press for two halves, especially when the opposition changes things at half time. 
 

Also It’s hard to maintain momentum and dictate terms if there is a player or two that has a lapse, makes a mistake or is out of place. 

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16 minutes ago, Shance said:

I'd love to know what Ralph says at half time. It's as if he says job done lads and hands them all a pint because we completely fall off a cliff in the second half of nearly every game. Leicester were there to be beat imo and we bottled it. 

we run ourselves into the ground recovering our errors and pressing teams to try to regain possession, and also covering back in numbers to prevent one on ones. In the second half, players are more tired, so you don't see our RM and CM all helping and covering our right back. Instead its down to the right back to handle the opponent on his own, and that ain't always possible, as we saw with Livramento last night. Our individual frailties/limitations are basically hidden in the first half but exposed in the second. 

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I thought we did ok against a team that is man for man better than ours. If you picked an eleven from the two squads last night I think Redmond or Salsiu might get in, but that is it. 

Armstrong needs to learn to play a one two. Sit him down and make him watch Channons goal  against Liverpool ( 200 pass move in 82 ) until he gets it. Too many attacks slowed down while he tried to take people on instead. 

Also, bringing Dewsbury-Hall on changed the game, as if we put a man on him it left his butler unmarked ! 

 

.  

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34 minutes ago, Chez said:

we run ourselves into the ground recovering our errors and pressing teams to try to regain possession, and also covering back in numbers to prevent one on ones. In the second half, players are more tired, so you don't see our RM and CM all helping and covering our right back. Instead its down to the right back to handle the opponent on his own, and that ain't always possible, as we saw with Livramento last night. Our individual frailties/limitations are basically hidden in the first half but exposed in the second. 

Well if that is the case, and I think you are likely correct, the only obvious remedy short of changing the style, is bolder use of subs.

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4 hours ago, david in sweden said:

Saints have concede 8 goals in the last 3 games and the majority of those can surely be put down to " keeper error ". 

I'm thinking 1, possibly 2 of the 8 - how is that the majority?

5 hours ago, WALK DMC said:

We said the same during the game last night;  the lack of vision/execution in slipping players through has been an issue for a while.  I actually feel a little sorry for Armstrong as he does make good runs but is very rarely seen (or seen too late) so his runs are in vain and probably add to his overall frustration. 

After a new goalie, a creative number 10 would be high on my shopping list. 

I agree with this.  Trouble is in our system the 10's play more like inside out wingers.  Someone sitting in the hole with guile (like Madison, Mount) would really help, but not sure the club would be looking for that type of player.

5 hours ago, WALK DMC said:

I agree with the vast majority on here, McCarthy should have done better. However in the rush to condemn him, I haven't seen any comments about the abysmal clearing header from Salisu which didn't clear the penalty area and dropped fairly central to the goal; a half decent clearance at that point would have meant that we wouldn't now be debating McCarthy's inadequacies. 

And before that Bednarek gave away a corner that he could easily been a throw.  Without the corner Evans stays in his own half and there is no goal.

5 hours ago, Charlie Wayman said:

Tosh!  See what you want to see.

Pot. Kettle. Black.

 

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7 hours ago, Mr X said:

I agree with this his second half tactics and subs seem to have no relation to what's going on on the pitch! Almost like  he literally draws them out of a hat, when its plain to see who was under performing/needing a rest.  What worries me Is conceding 9 goals in three games and that a Leicester  team that barely got out of second gear still managed to score twice.  Its plain for all to see our keeper just isn't good enough on current form 

i think it is 8 goals in 3 matches, but point well taken. Our defence/goalkeeping has cost us 5 points in the last 3 games

Should have had 6 points in the last 3 but have earned just 1 - which is the difference between 16th and 7th place in the table!! < so frustrating!

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2 hours ago, Shance said:

I'd love to know what Ralph says at half time. It's as if he says job done lads and hands them all a pint because we completely fall off a cliff in the second half of nearly every game. Leicester were there to be beat imo and we bottled it. 

It's a well debated point. We are very often the better team in the first half of games so maybe Ralph thinks, no need to change anything whereas, his opposing manager has to try something different tactically or bring on a sub. This is the way it goes and it generally results in us losing our ascendancy. Not sure what the answer is. Maybe Ralph needs to anticipate opposition changes and get the first punch in by changing our tactics or making a sub at half time. Yesterday there was a case for replacing Armstrong with Broja which may have given Leicester more to think about. I guess for Ralph he's damned if he does and damned if he doesn't. 

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39 minutes ago, The Left Back said:

I'm thinking 1, possibly 2 of the 8 - how is that the majority?

I agree with this.  Trouble is in our system the 10's play more like inside out wingers.  Someone sitting in the hole with guile (like Madison, Mount) would really help, but not sure the club would be looking for that type of player.

And before that Bednarek gave away a corner that he could easily been a throw.  Without the corner Evans stays in his own half and there is no goal.

Pot. Kettle. Black.

 

Agree that Bednarek was careless and gave away a corner when he should have been belting it out to the side for a throw. He shares a portion of the blame for that soft goal by Evans. These are the fine margins when, with more concentration and less panic, danger is averted at least cost. I get that, in the heat of the moment, mistakes are made and clearly we can't afford the quality defenders who would have no problem coolly knocking that ball out for a throw-in rather than hurriedly mishitting it behind for a costly corner. 

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Look at Leicesters attacking riches compared to ours. We did well to gain a point.

Fans who complain about the keeper, whether being at the near post need to go in goal and face shots from amateur players let alone the modern footballer.

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10 hours ago, The Left Back said:

And there were loads of spectators round us who seemed new to us and football in general - 'football tourists' I believe is the expression 

My favourite example of this was the bloke who tried to bring a tray of about 5 pints back up into the seats after half time. He got a reasonable way up the stairs before a steward told him to take them back down.

I'd like to think he stood in the concourse and drank them all himself during the second half and went home absolutely shit faced.

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1 hour ago, The Cat said:

My favourite example of this was the bloke who tried to bring a tray of about 5 pints back up into the seats after half time. He got a reasonable way up the stairs before a steward told him to take them back down.

I'd like to think he stood in the concourse and drank them all himself during the second half and went home absolutely shit faced.

Drinking that piss water, he’d probably drown before he got shit faced 

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16 hours ago, Charlie Wayman said:

There is no club that more flatters to deceive than the current Saints and it's been the same old story for three years. That so many on here are elated and grateful that we battled our way to "a stunning draw against Leicester" tells us all we need to know.

We are not going forward, we are going going backwards, we are stuck in the middle. Seeing the same old patterns of play with the same old outcomes week after week is switching me off big time and my expectations - like no doubt many others - are now rock bottom.

Individual errors again cost us the win last night it seems that our current crop of players are either incapable of understanding their own shortcomings and addressing them or they are so brain washed by 'the system' that they have stopped thinking for themselves altogether and play as automatons.

A very unsatisfactory evening all round.

 

Did you see either of the bore score draws the night before Saints game? I did, and my conclusion is that the teams likely to get relegated play games trying not to lose. Both Saints and Leicester played to win, a much higher risk reward strategy!  Strap in, enjoy the ride! You have to admit it's at least more fun than the Puel defensive masterclasses?

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16 hours ago, Whitey Grandad said:

Yeah, I’ve looked at it again and it’s a couple of yards inside but ‘from the edge of the area’ is how I remembered it. Low down and slightly to his right and bounced once on the way but a routine gather for a goalkeeper. He somehow manages to spoon the ball out to his left. 
 

I look at it this way. If I had been standing there in my prime as a full back I would have had no trouble booting the ball into the stands on the right.

 

Macca gets a lot of stick that ought to be directed more at the players in front of him.

I thought it was a good battling display by manager and team, Saints sizzled in the first half against a somewhat jaded Leicester and they didn't totally capitulate after going behind.

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21 hours ago, Charlie Wayman said:

There is no club that more flatters to deceive than the current Saints and it's been the same old story for three years. That so many on here are elated and grateful that we battled our way to "a stunning draw against Leicester" tells us all we need to know.

What a fantasy land you live in.

Jesus wept.

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I get the feeling that A Armstrong is continually trying to get himself into a position to score a wonder goal but he invariably ends up in giving the ball away or hitting it against defenders. He needs to realise that laying the ball off to someone else who is in a better position to score is helpful for winning games as well. 

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