Connect with us

EPL

Premier League crisis club of the week: Southampton

Published

on

While a 4-0 away defeat to Manchester City is never usually reason enough to be named crisis club of the week – City are very, very good, and Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa are still Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa – in this case, an exception must be made given all the quiet turmoil that’s bubbling up beneath the surface on England’s south coast.

Drumroll please. Everyone, say hello to the current hottest mess in the Premier League, a division packed full of hot messes. That’s right, it’s Southampton, AKA The Saints, AKA James Ward-Prowse’s Set Piece Delivery FC.

What’s the crisis?

There are many different kinds of crises.

1) Existential crises, the kind where you question if life has any inherent meaning – unusually common among supporters of bottom-half Premier League teams, particularly Aston Villa.

Advertisement

2) Financial crises, the kind where you live in a country inexplicably run by Liz Truss.

3) Technological crises, like when Arsene Wenger got his zip stuck on that massive Arsenal puffer coat he used to wear in the winter, the one that went right from his neck to his ankles.

It’s difficult to put your finger on exactly what kind of crisis Southampton are experiencing at this moment in time but what we do know is this: they are the current footballing equivalent of the ‘this is fine’ meme, the one with the placid little dog in the bowler hat having a cup of tea as flames roar up around him and he slowly succumbs to smoke inhalation. That one. You know the one I’m talking about. Even if you’re 45 years old and going through a midlife crisis. Hey look, there’s another kind, one Ralph Hasenhuttl and his consistent roadman attire wouldn’t know about at all.

To be more precise, Southampton have lost four on the trot, won only twice in the league this season and there are consistent reports, as in almost every week, that the manager has lost the dressing room. In other words, Ralph’s doomed.

Advertisement

Why are they in crisis?

A myriad of reasons, Clive.

Captain leader legend Ward-Prowse looks knackered and is playing the kind of crab football (short, back and sideways) that would make Harry Winks blush.

They don’t have a goalscorer. Che Adams is a handful and leads the line well but he isn’t a natural finisher. Adam Armstrong appears to firmly belong in the Dwight Gayle, Anthony Knockaert and Matej Vydra category of being too good for the Championship but overwhelmingly ineffective in the Premier League.

Moussa Djenepo is Moussa Djenepo, and therefore not very good at all.

Advertisement

After almost four years in charge, Hasenhuttl seems to have run out of ways to get a squad of relatively average talent playing slightly better-than-average football. But boy oh boy, what a journey it’s been.

What can they do to rectify it?

I can’t believe I’m writing these words but these are strange times we’re living in. Hire Sean Dyche. Hire him now. Especially given the fact that Steve Bruce has lost his job and the vultures that are West Bromwich Albion are circling.

Why Dyche? Imagine the defensive fortress he could create with Gavin Bazunu in goal and Armel Bella-Kotchap and Mohammed Salisu at centre-back. A nice flat four across midfield with Joe Aribo and Stuart Armstrong as narrow wingers. Romeo Lavia learning to shuttle across like he’s never shuttled across before. You can just picture it, can’t you?

Whether the infamous worm-chewer is the right man for the job or not, Southampton have a history of making smart appointments and might want to go for a slightly more enticing option (Kjetil Knutsen, anyone?). It does, however, seem inevitable that Ralph Hasenhuttl will depart the club at some point this season and probably sooner rather than later.

Advertisement

A breath of fresh air in the dressing room could be all it takes to get this club back to being a solid mid-table side somehow still capable of losing 9-0 on any given weekend. Unless they appoint Sean Dyche of course, given that the man would instantly retire out of shame the moment he ever conceded nine goals in a game.

Source link

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

EPL

Al-Nassr offer Cristiano Ronaldo record-breaking contract

Published

on

Al-Nassr have offered Cristiano Ronaldo a contract that could make him the highest paid footballer in history, according to report.

The 37-year-old sensationally left Manchester United by mutual agreement earlier this month after he criticised the club’s players, manager and hierarchy in an explosive interview with Piers Morgan.

Ronaldo, who is currently away at the World Cup with Portugal, has been targeted by clubs in Saudi Arabia before, and turned down the opportunity to join Al-Hilal in the summer despite being offered over £300m to do so.

90min previously revealed that Al-Hilal were preparing a fresh offer for Ronaldo, but it’s believed they have turned their attention to Lionel Messi and other priorities – paving the way for Al-Nassr to try and engineer a move of their own.

Advertisement

Ronaldo’s current intention is to remain in Europe, where he can continue to compete in the Champions League, but sources have confirmed to 90min that Al-Nassr have put forward a blockbuster contract offer to take him to Saudi Arabia.

Al-Nassr’s offer is believed to be a three-year deal worth close to £250m a year once add-ons, incentives and bonuses are factored in – eclipsing the huge contract Kylian Mbappe penned earlier this summer to remain at Paris Saint-Germain.

Ronaldo is yet to respond to Al-Nassr’s proposal, but his desire to continue competing at the highest level was made clear in the interview he conducted with Morgan.

Newcastle United, owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, and Chelsea are two Premier League teams to have previously been linked with Ronaldo.

Advertisement

Source link

Continue Reading

EPL

Marcus Rashford pays tribute to late friend with goal celebration

Published

on


Marcus Rashford has revealed that his celebration following his first goal against Wales was a tribute to a friend who’d recently passed away.

The Man Utd man was in electric form for the Three Lions on Tuesday evening, scoring a brace and catapulting himself to the top of the tournament goalscoring charts in the process. In scoring his second and third goal in Qatar, Rahsford became the first Man Utd player to score three goals at a World Cup for England since Sir Bobby Charlton achieved the feat way back in 1966.

Speaking after the game to the press, Rashford revealed that he pointed to the sky following his first goal in order to pay tribute to his friend who passed away following a long battle with cancer:

Advertisement

“I lost one of my friends a couple of days ago. He had quite a long battle with cancer. I’m pleased I scored for him, he was a big supporter and good friend of mine. He was someone who came into my life.”

Rashford also gave an assessment of the game itself and his overall performance stating: “I fancied a free-kick in the first half, but the one in the second half was in a better position. From there it’s about being calm and executing what you do in training. They don’t go in often but I was glad it did today.

“It’s a great feeling. We were a bit disappointed after the USA game, and the only way to bounce back is to have a good performance in your next game; I thought we did it. It was just about taking the chances when they came.”

Harry Symeou hosts Scott Saunders and Toby Cudworth to look back on South Korea/Japan ’02 as part of the ‘Our World Cup’ series. We take a trip down memory lane – join us!

Advertisement

If you can’t see the podcast embed, click to download or listen to the episode in full!



Source link

Continue Reading

EPL

Tottenham ask Inter about availability of key player

Published

on


Tottenham Hotspur have made enquiries to Inter over right wing-back Denzel Dumfries, 90min understands.

Spurs are on the hunt for reinforcements at wing-back, with 90min previously reporting that one of Emerson Royal and Matt Doherty could be sold in January, while a loan move for Djed Spence looks likely.

On their list of targets is Dumfries, who is currently at the World Cup with the Netherlands. Inter need to sell one star player by the end of the season to help ease their financial woes.

Advertisement

It was previously thought that Milan Skriniar would be the man to make way, but he will either sign a new contract or leave for free when his current deal expires at the end of the season.

Instead, Inter will look to sell Dumfries in January and loan him back for the rest of the season, though Spurs would push to take him off their hands straight away.

Scott Saunders hosts Graeme Bailey in the latest episode of Talking Transfers, discussing Cristiano Ronaldo’s interview and his future, Man Utd’s interest in Cody Gakpo, plus the latest on Endrick and Rafael Leao. Available on all audio platforms.

If you can’t see the podcast embed, click here to download the episode in full!

Advertisement

In addition to Tottenham, Chelsea are also interested in the Dutchman, and this could drive Dumfries’ price up.

Dumfries signed for Inter in 2021 as a replacement for the outgoing Achraf Hakimi, whose sale partly contributed to the exit of current Spurs head coach Antonio Conte.

He scored five goals from wing-back in his debut season at San Siro and has found the net twice more this term.





Source link

Continue Reading

Trending

Home
Live Scores
Use App
Live TV
Predictions