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14 Aug 2023 15:26:17
Curious on who people think we should sell or keep out of Mara, Aribo, Lyanco, Bree, Perraud and Sulemana?

Hearing rumours that Onuachu may be off back to Genk with a swap deal for a right winger (think we are already strong here with Tella and Ameyaw).

Plus ABK going back to Germany. Then Holgate coming in on loan as a replacement (plus Downes for JWP). Maybe even Mccarthy to Everton.

50m spent on a quality GK, CB and Striker is what I think we all want now, with no more out the door. Then I think playoffs is achievable.


1.) 14 Aug 2023 18:24:01
I would keep sulemena if he is willing to fight and perraud is a good player and should be strong at this level. The others could go and I wouldn't be too upset although lyanco will give you passion, although I would play him as a dm not a cb



31 Mar 2023 17:57:59
If you are curious what Saints need to stay up, it is probably 36 points, which is 13 from our last 10 or 3 wins and 4 draws.

This is based on an analysis of the min needed to survive over the last 10 seasons and final table projections based on the avg. points this seasons and the last 6 and 10 games.

Can we do it? If we avg. the same points per game over the season or last 10 games then no. If we maintain our form in the Selles era, then potentially yes.

This would give us 3 wins, 3 draws and 3 losses in our next 9 and needing a point on the last day to make it.

Saints are top of the bottom 9 clubs over the last 6 games. The other teams hit 13% fewer points than their season average, whereas we hit +62%. We will need that trend to continue, to have a chance.

Going to be a thrilling finale, either way and hope the stats are useful.

Here is a reasonable best case scenario:

Wins: Palace, Fulham and Bournemouth
Draws: West Ham, Forest, Newcastle and Liverpool
Losses: Man City, Arsenal and Brighton


1.) 06 Apr 2023 16:05:31
If you're really curious as to what Saints need to stay up I think we can say an absolute miracle

2.) 08 Apr 2023 19:56:45
At this point, I agree with you!



10 Mar 2023 13:51:50
Hey, I have followed this thread for years and really enjoyed all your comments but never chipped in. As an expat, I am not close enough to the action to give much value but as a stats geek, I thought would share a few nuggets to give us a glimmer of hope.

Of course, we are clearly up against it for relegation and our odds are around 65% on Opta and in the betting odds.

However, in 9 of the last 10 seasons. 36 points or less have been enough. 4 wins, 3 draws and 6 losses to get us to 36 is tough with our fixtures but possible, with a little luck.

Over the last 10 games (with a dubious manager for 7), we were two points ahead of Leeds, four for Bournemouth and 1 for Everton. Keep that up and we will stay up, with an improved goal difference.

With Alcaraz hitting form, better team spirit and some new faces, you never know!


1.) 10 Mar 2023 22:58:55
Welcome my friend.

For many of us ardent Saints fans, some of whom have supported this club for half a century, the forum provides a form of mental health therapy. Knowing that we are not alone watching the tragic decline of our club is somehow reassuring.

It is an emotional roller coaster - but to be fair, when you look at the insight of many of our posters they are so right.

So welcome and carry on - not everyone will agree with you but heh that’s life!

2.) 11 Mar 2023 08:53:40
Thank you for the warm welcome Millertime and I agree on the need for theraleutic rants!

I fully agree with your comments on the sad decline and poor decisions. I am from generations of Saints fans and have been there in the stands for the highs and lows of relegation and promotion, in this crazy emotional roller coaster. Now I just see it from afar.

I was quite optimistic this year, after a rare summer of spending but the red flags of lack of experience and goal scorer were clear to see. I work with data everyday but you never make a good decision on stats alone, without the wider picture.

Spending by spreadsheet was naive. Cortese had an analytical mind but saw the wider picture and picked Pochettino, SR didn't and we got NJ.

After the massive Leeds defeat, I said this is definitively over for Saints now but looking at the last 10 game stats, seeeing a cutting edge in the side from Alcaraz and a fighting spirit under Selles, there may be a little bit of hope. It's the hope that gets ya though!

The lack of a great GK like Niemi to save us a goal a game is a worry. At least we have JWP to get us a goal out of nowhere like Le Tiss could.

Looking forward to seeing all your match insights, over the last games.




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23 Oct 2023 08:30:14
I have been crunching the numbers to give us some end of season projection, based on our avg points vs Top 8, Mid 8 and bottom 8 sides and remaining games.

It's tough news, as it stands, with an expected 73 pts and a 7th place finish.

Some will say our Top 8 performances have been unfairly low due to injuries, reckless play and post transfer window issues. Plus, we have key players coming in and RM sides or a new manager can finish strongly. Factor these in and expect 79-84pts or 3rd to 5th.

Others will point out we have had some lucky late goals against poor sides, with Tella, JWP and Adams contributing, RM is a Mid table manager and we could lose players in Jan. Factor these in and we are looking at about 69 points or 9th.

If you include both factors and consider the betting odds, super computer projections, squad value and form average, expect around 74-77 points or 4th to 6th.

I will run the numbers again after 16 games.




22 Oct 2023 10:57:22
After the Preston game, we go on an extraordinary 22 game run without facing a single side in the top 6!

With THB now settled and Stewart, Larios and Stephens to come back in, we have no excuses.

In March and April we face the big sides, that gives us a month to be settled after the Jan window.

The fixture list is very kind to us for the next 4 months. Let's get some momentum! COYR




24 Sep 2023 08:44:38
I am wondering if a formation change can get us out the rut

Go 4 4 2 - let Stu, Edozie and Sulemana run at them with Charles adding protection. Get some width and pace down the channels, if Adams is misfiring even put Alcaraz or Sulemana up top to get our best players on the pitch. Stu as captain.

KWP. THB/Stephens Bednarek Manning

Sulemana. Charles. Stu. Edozie

Alcaraz. Adams/Armstrong

I am clutching at straws. Let me know your thoughts.


1.) 24 Sep 2023 10:46:14
Did you mean to include Manning - he’s awful.

I agree that we need to add more fire power - I’m hoping that when Stewart is fit he will bring goals.

It’s interesting that Newcastle are reportedly interested in Alcatez yet he doesn’t get a start at Southampton …

2.) 24 Sep 2023 11:48:39
Looks like we are completely in the mire. Youngsters are losing all confidence and hope. No good or half decent players to help them along. Stop trying all the old and useless tactics (they do not work) . We are in desparate need of manager with experience. All we seem to get is new and untried managers. There is a manager still waiting for a job called G Potter. We could do a lot worse. We have been going downhill for the last 2 years now. Shippie

3.) 24 Sep 2023 12:43:19
Larios over Manning when fit clearly.

I am not sure what is the least bad option. KWP as RB and Manning LB or KWP LB and Holgate or Bree RB

4.) 24 Sep 2023 15:13:04
I’d probably go for Bree right back and KWP. I didn’t agree with KWP playing left back with Perraud on the bench, but Bree is better than Manning.
as long as he doesn’t continue with this bizarre tactic of having the wingbacks forward and in. I was watching the game yesterday and the space on the wings was crazy ., at times I think kwp was miles from the wingers, who duly received it without pressure! ’

5.) 24 Sep 2023 22:42:43
Shippie54 - couldn't agree more, Potter keeps turning down jobs everywhere, i reckon he would snap up the Saints job in a heart beat.maybe he's waiting for the call to come and rescue us, being an ex-Saint! I reckon RM has until end of October (maybe less), if we lose next 2 he may well be out on his arse! We just don't look capable of winning a raffle let alone a football match!



19 Sep 2023 17:46:49
I am wondering if we should switch to a 4 2 3 1 to give us more protection at the back against the better sides. Thoughts?

Downes and Charles holding with Sulemana, Edozie, Alcaraz/Stu/AA and Adams a front 4 to break at speed.

Looks like we are broadly all agreed on team selection and style of play change. Maybe a formation tweak can get us through this patch, until we sort ourselves out.


1.) 20 Sep 2023 23:10:11
Adams offers nothing - no goal scoring threat since he's arrived at saints, no pace, poor touch, doesn't win aerial duels, and his link up play is sub par. At least with Armstrong he would offer pace in behind and effort. Stephens isn't great but we miss his "leadership". The main issue with RM right now is thinking he can allow kwp to come into cm to make up numbers but all it does is leave the cbs to cover him and when they get dragged out wide were left wide open through the middle, it's schoolboy tactics that we playing around with the ball too deep. Keep balls fine if your higher up the pitch and keeping a bit of buzz and zip to the passing but this lot are being taught that slow lazy play is fine, it's ridiculous



07 Sep 2023 22:21:36
Saw an interesting article in the Daily Echo with this suggested lineup. I am curious to hear peoples thoughts:

Bazunu; Walker-Peters, Charles, Harwood-Bellis, Manning; Downes, Alcaraz, A Armstrong; Kamaldeen, Fraser, Adams


1.) 08 Sep 2023 09:17:21
Bednarek should be in there. Having sung Manning praises I have say how disappointing his last 4 displays have been. When Larios is fully fit he will challenge for a starting place. Still think Mara needs regular starts then we might see the true player.

2.) 08 Sep 2023 13:04:04
Manning is struggling, even on the basics of football .
it’s a bit strange considering his previous Swansea performances. Trouble is, we have an unfit larios, Perraud offloaded .

3.) 08 Sep 2023 15:23:23
Agree on the hesitation around Buzanu and Manning. They both show potential but coming up short now, so good we have competition coming in.

I like the bold selection in getting AA, Adams, Sulemana and Alcaraz all in the side, plus Downes and Charles defensively. Though we probably need some experience in CB not just Charles and THB, so Bednarek or Stephens.

I feel we have a playoff side, with a settled 11 and IF our style of play is sorted. Interesting year ahead.

4.) 09 Sep 2023 13:16:41
Our best 11 based purely on names should be something like;

Bazunu, Walker-Peters, Bednarek, Harwood-Bellis, Larios, Charles, Smallbone, Alcaraz, Sulemana, Adams, Edozie

Arguments to be made about the best CB pairing, Downes, Stewart when fit and A Armstrong (who I don’t fully like as a midfielder - I’d want Alcaraz as the further forward mid with two behind him really) .

But that above XI with any one of a few players changed within it should win this league at a canter IF we can learn to adapt and not keep giving the ball away 20 yards from our goal

5.) 10 Sep 2023 09:24:22
Well another eventful market has come and gone and has to be said we fared fairly well.Following that a disastrous shellacking at Sunderland when the ‘wily old fox’Tony Mowbray quickly fully exploited Russell Martins susceptible game plan and team selection.There will obviously be a queue attempting to do the same but at least Martin has two full weeks to really correct the weaknesses and earn his corn by selecting our best x1 capable of ringing all the bells.Both teams as posted by Saint That A Kickin the Head! and Saint GGsy we’re very appealing and either is better than we have previously fielded.I hope the pairing of Shea Charles and T Harwood-Bellis proves successful as I personally don’t rate Bednarek that highly.With the future addition of Ross Stewart thugs could really heat up.One question why did the anticipated signining of Nathan Wood suddenly disappear off the radar.? Perhaps SFC have pushed any deal out until January in order to benefit their negotiating position? One thing’s for sure this is not only going to be a three horse race and 6/7 young teams and their Coaches are all capable to aspiring to the EPL so Russell Martin with the squad he now has needs to be right on his game from herein in regards his future team selections and game plans. KOM!

6.) 10 Sep 2023 18:11:10
I make you right St John - we have the players but don’t have the system sorted. It’s about knowing your limitations and playing to your strengths.

Believe me, playing out from the back is high risk with little reward. Presently, the chances of scoring on the break are vanishingly slim yet I’ve lost count of how many times we’ve been caught out on the break.

As I see it, the Championship is split into three tiers: 6 or 7 teams who should make play offs, 6 or 7 who have half a chance and the remainder who aren’t at the races.

We are IMO in the top third but not by much and if RM shows the ignorance (or arrogance) of some of his predecessors, then we are mid table.

7.) 11 Sep 2023 08:55:18
RM has got to coach the players to move the ball quicker and use the long ball sometimes otherwise there is no point in playing any of our front 7 players, particularly Sulemana and AA




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26 Sep 2023 15:16:34
Great article and agree with all your sentiments.




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26 Sep 2023 06:51:12
Completely agree.

If we had a manager who could adapt our style to our team's strength, wouldn't they be rubbing their hands with glee. You have the tallest player in the league in Onuachu, fastest player in Sulemana, proven scorers in Adams and Tella.

I would be running the channels and crossing it to tall Paul. Playing long to hold it up or flick it on. Counter attacking with Alcaraz, Sulemana and Tella.




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20 Sep 2023 10:06:45
I completely understand your frustration. Getting beaten is one thing but tamely losing with a whimper is another.

I do believe we have a squad worthy of playoffs. The value of our squad on transfermarket and the bettings odds at the end of the transfer window both put us in the top 3.

What we have is a squad not playing to its potential - lacking leadership, lacking confidence and lacking a style of play.

I believe this is fixable but we need to make the changes required.

1. Stop playing out from the back 24/7. Especially for young players, lacking confidence, this is a risk.
2. Protect our back line from counter attacks, e.g. with Charles and Downes as holding midfielders or not pushing too many people forward with slow build ups.
3. THB needs Bednarek or Stephens alongside him.
4. Manning needs to step up or step aside. In time, Larios may take his place. Until then KWP could switch to the left and Stephens, Holgate or Bree could play at RB.
5. Alcaraz, Edozie, Sulemana and Adams could be an exciting front 4 on the break (plus AA, Stu and Stewart), we need to play to their strengths and mix up our play.
6. I understand players are disappointed after last year and not getting moves etc. We need to draw a line, move on and not indulge it. The best way to play in the PL is to get promoted.
7. If we need to get Al Pacino in to give a proper speech, let’s have a whip round!

I expected us to be languishing around 10th after the first 10 games. Saints and RM seem to start slowly but now is the time for a change of plan and attitude.

Over the next sets of ten we should be aiming to move up to 7th, then 5th, then 3rd and be knocking on the door of the top 2 or having the momentum going in to the playoffs.

This should be our goal and it is obtainable IF we make the changes required and players coming back like Larios, Stewart and Sulemena make an impact. Balls in your court RM and SR.




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08 Sep 2023 15:39:47
I would have brought in Fonte and made him captain. He may not have played every game but he could have steadied the ship in the last 20 minutes, marshalled the defence, mentored THB and Charles and given protection and confidence to Bazunu.

Maybe RM felt threatened and/or SR did not want to pay the wages or were not sure if they could have moved on CC and Salisu to make way. let's hope THB does the job.




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16 Aug 2023 19:40:04
Thank you for that great financial context @2408.

Given the circumstances, if most of Perraud, Aribo. Mara, Lyanco, Sulemana, Bree, Djenepo, Onuachu and ABK are sold/loaned and at least Downes, Holgate and Harwood-Bellis come in, then I would take that right now.

On paper, that is at least a playoffs squad and we balance the books to rebuild later.





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25 Nov 2023 22:15:31
With Leeds and Ipswich dropping points, this was a big missed opportunity to go third and close the gap in second. Frustrating.

That said, my early predictions were Saints 8th after 15 games, 6th after 30 and 4th at season end, so we are still in the mix.




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28 Oct 2023 13:21:39
And Holgate is death by a thousand cuts! Hope Larios gets back soon!

I thought Martin was supposed to be at one with the universe but unfortunately that seems a parallel universe from his latest comments!

Football is also about winning and not just nlindly playing the way you personally like to play.

Still, 2-0 up and in 4th as I write, so somehow we are still in the mix




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27 Oct 2023 16:25:01
I did not see the entire game but have a couple of questions for those that did:

1. Who is the lesser of two evils Manning or Bree?
2. We seem to struggle with Charles in the side. Is that coincidence or because of him?

Adams lack of drive is odd. If he wants to be in the first 11, he is not helping himself, if he wants to get signed by a PL side, he is not making his case.

I wonder if there was a deal agreed with Everton in the summer to sell him in Jan after Ross Stewart was back from injury.




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25 Oct 2023 22:02:49
We have now scored 4 goals in 94+ minutes this season. Without those we would be in 21st place!

Still, somehow we are still in 5th and would have been 3rd with a win!




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21 Oct 2023 21:19:20
Superb day of results for us. Being in the playoffs will be a huge psychological boost.

If we can take 5 or more points from our next 3 games, we have every reason to believe we can scrape a playoff spot, especially with Stewart and Larios coming in.

Manning is suspended so be interesting to see if Bree gets his chance against Preston.