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30 Nov 2023 18:35:51
Just been looking at the goal difference of the last 5 years, auto promotion places .
firstly, our goal difference is +2 compared to

Leicester 21
Ipswich 15
Leeds 13
West Brom 12

Previous years final places

Norwich +36
Sheffield Utd +37

Leeds +42
West Brom +32

Norwich +39
Watford +33

Fulham +63
Bournemouth +35

Burnley +52
Sheffield Utd +34

Meanwhile, saints are still playing tipsy tapsy football against far weaker sides. If we don't up our +ve goal difference against weaker teams, we aren't going anywhere!
And this is where Martin is out of his depth, he's never won promotion or got anywhere near it!
We are so far off .

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30 Nov 2023 21:38:32
Need to start somewhere. Yes we aren’t convincing but we are at least winning. And I’d rather that than playing well and losing. We need to hope confidence builds, and our unbeaten run stretches past 20 games.

An indication of where we are attacking wise. If we had conceded one goal more in each game played, we’d be 20 points worse off and only outside the drop zone on goal difference.

BUT we’re fourth, and are finding ways to win or avoid defeat. We’d all have taken this position after we were trounced by Leicester. Stewart’s injury record is worrying and with Che out of favour, we need a goal scorer in January, else with our run of fixtures to come, I’d half hope to be pushing the automatic spots by 2024.

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29 Nov 2023 20:45:53
That was the most dull 45 minutes imaginable - devoid of entertainment, inspiration and effort.

It looks like we've decided to play 'walk football' - their shirts won't need washing - not a drop of sweat anywhere.

The good news is that the second half can only get better.


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29 Nov 2023 23:10:23
And it did - just about…

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29 Nov 2023 23:50:12
It’s so nice to come on here and see an honest opinion.
I’ve been getting absolutely battered on Facebook.
Any mention of him being an awful manager with though previous success whatsoever, has resulted in criticism towards me…
We have scraped so many wins, Bristol tonight could’ve snatched a draw or even been ahead.
We gave them so many chances .
While I am excited at our league position, it is not a true reflection of the quality of the football we have played.

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25 Nov 2023 17:02:27
I honestly thought RM had learnt a lesson about sitting back in the second half. I was wrong 😩

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25 Nov 2023 17:08:24
It’s almost like he reverts to type …
We should be coming out the second half and absolutely going for it, attacking at Speed, and with width…
But nope, he wants to play his tippy Tappy football!

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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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26 Nov 2023 02:46:05
After recent team improvements fresulting from RM’s”on the job learning” (and useful advice probably gleaned from several posters) it is a severe body blow not being able to account for a lowly positioned team forced to make 5 changes from their last game.Saints performance emphasises the gap in experience and guile between RM and the likes of Carlos Corberan (WBA) ;Daniel Farke (Leeds Utd) and aa few other Championship Managers who may qualify for the “play offs”with a distinct advantage over us on a neutral ground should we qualify.

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26 Nov 2023 14:28:44
St John
You are absolutely spot on, good managers learn from mistakes, learn from others, listen to and learn from players, they grow as a person and develop their technical and tactical know how.
I’ve watched so many games over the last few years, where minor tweaks by opposing mangers, have completely changed the game.
Martin has always been an average manager, if anything taking clubs backwards.
So many points gained in the 90+ period. Many have lauded this as fantastic, but we should have put those games to bed much earlier. Finally it’s caught up with us.
Ralph was a similar person, it didn’t matter if we were playing bottom of the league or top, he played the same tactics. a must win game was 5 at the back with one up front.
Martin should be saying, this team has injuries, non a bad run, let’s do this. let’s go for a big win and reduce increase our +ve goal difference!
But nope, he’s possession obsessed …

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26 Nov 2023 19:57:48
I’ve kept quiet lately because I disagreed with the popular view that we had turned the corner.

Sure, results have been mostly good and we’ve had some good fortune along the way. But, and it’s a big but, I’ve not seen much of a change in tempo or ambition on the pitch to suggest we’re learnt very much.

If anything our league position belies our performances, not that I’m complaining. It’s just infuriating that with a little more courage we would be neck and neck with Leicester, not 11 points adrift.

If we can get home wins against Bristol City and Cardiff then 7 points out of 9 would be a decent haul post the latest tedious international break.

There are reasons to be cheerful but I’m glad I’m not the only one not lighting up the cigar yet.

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25 Nov 2023 12:23:44
Does anyone know why on the saints ticket page that Norwich isn't on there?

I want to take my son to that away match.

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Timo Werner

21 Nov 2023 13:06:36
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new player profile about, Timo Werner

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Diogo Jota

18 Nov 2023 07:00:55
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new player profile about, Diogo Jota

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Jonathan David

10 Nov 2023 08:02:01
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new player profile about, Jonathan David

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08 Nov 2023 18:25:12
As our attention draws to the weekend I couldn't help think back to a cold night in February 1976 when we faced West Brom in a 5th round FA cup replay. What a memorable night that was under the Dell floodlights and to this day I recall their goalkeeper (Osbourne) entertaining the Milton Road end by keeping the tally of goals conceded (3 within the first 30 mins) in the condensation on the goal post.
It was also the first glimpse we had of a 19 year old called Bryan Robson!

And so to Saturday and whilst I would welcome 3 points howsoever gained, wouldn't it be great to have a scintillating performance to match our cup winning side - a Channon hatrick and a Gilchrist wonder goal.

Dream on is the likely response but heh - what a night that was!

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Jonathan David

08 Nov 2023 08:14:03
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new player profile about, Jonathan David

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05 Nov 2023 15:26:18
Another late winner - we will be getting a reputation. Actually, I would suggest this was one of our most complete performances of the season.

Last week I said Saints might be riding their luck. But fair play, the harder they work the luckier they become. Yes, Milwall hit the bar but Bart made more saves in one game than he ever did with us.

Also pleased to see an unchanged side/later substitutions and much, much better second half intensity. How does Stewart get a start at present?

Shame no Bednarek next week as West Brom will be a big test.

Just hoping we can keep the improvements coming through and we can become serious play-off candidates.


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04 Nov 2023 14:25:14
Amazing he has started with last week's winning team

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04 Nov 2023 13:31:05
Pretty football v pragmatic football. Which will triumph?

In this uncompromising patch of south London, they don't take prisoners and won't have any fears in the physical match up.

Over the years the likes of Mark Dennis, Terry Hurlock, Case, Ruddock, Golac, Steve Williams, Jo Jordan would have been licking their lips. Not sure we have that in our present group.

Let's hope for a clean sheet and and an ugly win.

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04 Nov 2023 17:04:32
That’ll do!

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05 Nov 2023 18:59:20
I’m not sure what to write really . we’re winning . just .
but it’s great to see us fighting harder, and definitely starting to get the ball in the box quicker.
but crikey are we doing it the hard way!
I can fully understand the idea of possession football higher up, to work an opening, to spread the defence, to get in behind. but can’t we start doing it from the first minute, not from the 70th minute!
Our get out of jail cards are going to be all used up soon!
We are still giving the opponents way too many shots in such little possession.
But it’s great to see the team spirit, a settled team . and no Manning

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Jadon Sancho

04 Nov 2023 09:29:57
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new player profile about, Jadon Sancho

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Sandro Tonali

01 Nov 2023 08:22:45
{Ed's Note - Ed001 has posted a new player profile about, Sandro Tonali

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28 Oct 2023 21:33:58
So, it is 3 weeks since I last posted (on Southampton Rumours rather than Banter).

The message from RM and the local media seems to have been `be patient` and `we are improving`.

Well I have been patient and we are improving. I am a long way from my first desperate post.

BUT we have been lucky. Leads lost at Hull and Preston. Last gasp goals meant 4 points instead of 1 point. Well done the players.

Today our first goal was probably offside and Baz was fortunate not to give away a penalty. They say the harder you work the luckier you get so well done (?) RM.

We again started well and like Leeds/Rotherham should have been out of sight by half time but 46 mins to 70 mins seems to be our downfall. Again we seem to have lost the initiative and wobbled and after Birmingham scored we looked a mess. We seem to have no answer to the fast counter attack. Our luck continued. The one great criticism of the vintage Barcelona/Spain sides was for all the intricate passing on the edge of the opponents box not many goals came as a result. Saints are the same - for all our possession we create no more goal chances than our opponents. Thankfully it does seem we finish games strongly but the relief when AA scored was there for all to see.

Whilst we remain as far behind second place as we did 3 weeks ago, at least there is more distance from the relegation zone. It does give cause for some optimism.

Keep a settled team (without Manning), make room for Stewart and find 2nd half intensity as our good fortune can`t be relied on and we could be smiling albeit not so much as during our last brief stay in the Championship. COYR.

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29 Oct 2023 00:16:11
Good post …
What I’m really struggling with, while trying to see the positives, is that each of our last results could have been the reverse score. if our opponents were sharper in front of goal .
Last two games .
Saints possession 72% 13 shots versus 11 shots
71% 11 shots versus 10 shots

How in so little possession is our opponents near on matching our number of shots.
because an extraordinary amount of the opponents possession is in our half.
We are so readable, so predictable, as others have said, we are being laughed at .
the Preston game they were literally waiting for a wayward pass, a delay in passing . they knew exactly where and how we were going to pass.
but still Martin continues with his rhetoric .
I have names it possession obsession…
He doesn’t care how many we concede or how few we score, he goes on about how possession we have.
Whilst I am really pleased at our league position, I’m actually of the opinion it’s because the quality is poor.
Martin is so obsessed with his way being the right way, that he can’t help forcing it on the team.
Our league position is hugely inflating his already huge ego.
If we were playing any EPL team, we would get destroyed.
If I was managing a club that was allowing so many shots against with very little possession. I would be studying the videos, discussing with coaches . it would be a long conversation .
Our game plan is giving opponents too much opportunities.
This rise up the league while not playing great football, has to end somewhen.
I have never known a me me me manager before, so deluded that he thinks our current position is all his doing.

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29 Oct 2023 12:10:10
I agree - normally I find myself bemoaning our bad luck but yesterday we definitely caught the breaks - Baz’s rush of blood to the head was a nailed on pen and our first goal was a smidge and a half offside.

They say luck balances out so rather than overthink it, just roll with it knowing that it won’t be long before we get a perfectly good goal disallowed etc.

A few post match thoughts:

I thought Downes had a better game yesterday.

Bree played like Bree.

Sulemana is different class.

Collectively not as strong as the League 1 squad from a few years back.

Well on course for a record low number of clean sheets ever!

Not too long now to the January window!

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30 Oct 2023 11:22:22
Millertime .
Downes definitely better when allowed some freedom to move the ball around, even pass forward!
Our goals were well worked goals, with getting into the box much quicker, even getting down to the byline and passing back!
I wonder how many of the previous games we could have killed off, had we been quicker with the balls into the box, instead of the incessant messing around .

I do worry that our current run and league position is simply feeding Martin’s ego and his belief that his way is right…
Possession football at all costs is not going to keep working.
the suicidal playing around with it at the back, is going to shoot us in the foot!

It’s good to see a happy crowd, it’s good be winning again.
but let’s see how good we really are,
Let’s move it quicker, into the box quicker and get it the average and below average teams to bed .

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31 Oct 2023 05:39:45
Following a smart recent addition-maybe just maybe a glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel with the introduction of Coach Colin Calderwood perhaps he can persuade/influence Russell Martin’s hard wired decisions to become tempered into a more attacking system and with the potential return of Ross Stewart and Juan Larios plus 2/3 astute signings in January a serious push for promotion suddenly becomes a reality! .Keep On Marching!

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