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Match Reports
For the best reports on Saints Home and Away Games


“The Official History of the Saints”
This was uploaded to YouTube from a Saints fans Video collection. Made by Meridian Films in 1990, it has never been released on DVD and as such, there is a whole generation of fans who will never have seen it.

A word of warning though, it runs to just over 1 hour 27 minutes, so be prepared to settle down for a while...

The January Transfer Window Shuts

Well, the transfer window has slammed shut and it seems that Saints have done reasonably well. The only slight dent in the shine of a job well done, was the unexpected move of Jack Cork to Swansea after he turned down a new contract offer from Saints. It seems the club couldn't offer him the one thing he craved, which was regular playing time. He has done well for the club in his time here, so I wish him well at his new club.

There were three new signings during the window. Firstly there was 27 year old Dutch midfielder Eljero Elia, on loan for the rest of the season from Bundesliga outfit, Werder Bremen. He joined at the beginning of January and made his Saints debut in the win away at Manchester United. He scored his first two goals for Saints in the away match at Newcastle on the 17th January.

On the final day, 23 year old Serbian international midfielder, Filip Djuričić also signed on loan until the end of the season from Benfica. This proved a bit complicated to arrange, as he was already on loan at German Bundesliga side FC Mainz 05 and there had to be an agreement struck between Saints, Benfica and Mainz.

The big surprise and signed right at the eleventh hour (literally!) was Ryan Bertrand, who made his loan from Chelsea permanent by signing a 4½ year contract, for what has variously been reported as being between £8.75 million and £10 million. His season long loan has clearly been a success and there was no point waiting until the end of the season to sign him, when there was the opportunity to complete the deal now. It was just ironic that this should happen just 24 hours after he was sent off in the Swansea game and will miss the next three games.

With Sam Gallagher now on his way back from injury and playing in the U21's and Jay Rodriguez due to start training very soon, they will seem like new signings, neither having played any part in proceedings so far this season.

Saints look as though they have every reason to be optimistic about the rest of the season, with the team stronger than it has been for a while. They just need to keep Pellè and Forster free of injury.

Channonite

3rd February 2015



Reflecting on the so called ‘Big Club’ games

So, Saints have come up against four of the ‘big’ teams this season and lost to all of them. That must mean that a top six finish is nothing but a silly pipe dream. The truth though is a bit more complex than that.

Let’s ignore all the wins and just focus on the four lost games. In order they were - Liverpool away on the 17th of August, Spurs away on the 5th of October, Manchester City at home on the 30th of November and Arsenal away on the 3rd December.

Liverpool was an odd game, apart from being the first match of the season, there was all the hype of Lambert, Lovren and Lallana joining the scousers over the summer and Saints with a whole host of new players. Looking back at the game, it was a cathartic release for the Saints fans, saying goodbye to a hero (Rickie Lambert) and booing a pantomime villain (Dejan Lovren). Lallana was unavailable to play through injury, so there was no chance to boo him.

The game proved there was life in Saints yet and the new players might just enable us to have a good season. Although the game was lost 2-1, there was enough there to make you think that with a bit more self-belief, the game could have been won.

The next game in our quartet is the Spurs away game, which was a 1-0 loss and really should have been a 1-1 draw, but for an appalling miss by Sadio Mané, who simply had to tap the ball into the net, having been put clean through by Bertrand.

That result hurt and Saints over the years have just seemed incapable of getting a result at White Heart Lane.

The third loss was the home match against Manchester City and the only game of the four that I have no problem at all with. Saints were simply beaten by the better side on the day. Although it was pretty even at half time, with both sides having had chances. The second half was a different matter entirely.

From the moment that Schneiderlin had to go off injured and was replaced by Maya Yoshida coming on in central defence and Alderweireld moving into midfield. Although the Belgian was surprisingly good in the role, the City forwards started to make more room and began to over-run Saints. Without wishing to over-simplify things, that was essentially that.

The fourth and final game in our series, was the Arsenal away game. This was a different sort of game to the Man City game, but was one injury after another to key players.

Already without Morgan Schneiderlin (out for a fortnight apparently), in short order Cork, Tadić and Alderweireld went off with injuries which will almost certainly see them all miss one match, or more. Long also took a knock in the first half and ended up having to be replaced when he seemed unable to run any more.

In spite of all this and partly because Fraser Forster chose this match to demonstrate exactly why he is so highly thought of, Saints made a good fist of it and only lost to an 89th minute goal. With a bit more luck (and one, or two fewer injuries) a point would have been achieved.

Conclusion

A point should have been the least that could reasonably have been expected at Liverpool. A point was probably the maximum that could have been expected from either of the Spurs and Arsenal games. The Manchester City game on the other hand was the only one where Saints got what they deserved - nothing.

That makes an additional 3, maybe four points at a stretch. Not a whole heap of difference from where we are at the moment. I guess what I am saying is that, even dropping these points, Saints are little worse off than at present.

What is an issue, is the mounting list of injuries, which will seriously hamper the club over the next three weeks, but hopefully the key players will be back for the Christmas/New Year games. Now would be a good time for one, or two of the youngsters to step up to the plate.

Channonite

4th December 2014

Saints Players Picture Gallery
Schneiderlin and Fonte
Graziano Pellè - 28.08.2014
Goalkeeping Coach Dave Watson and Fraser Forster - 24.08.2014
Florin Gardos - 24.08.2014
Shane Long - 24.08.2014
Toby Alderweireld - 18.10.2014
Dušan Tadić - 18.10.2014
Sadio Mané - 18.10.2014
Harrison Reed - 18.10.2014
Maya Yoshida - 18.10.2014
Jack Cork - 18.10.2014
Emmanuel Mayuka - 18.10.2014
Victor Wanyama - 18.10.2014
Morgan Schneiderlin and José Fonte warming up before the home game against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday 24th August

Click on this picture for more of some of Saints first team players

I intend to expand the number of pictures, as the season goes on to include as many pictures as I can get of the first team warming up, before the matches begin.

Saints 8-0 Sunderland
Clicking on the picture of the St.Mary’s scoreboard below takes you to the Sunderland match report page. There are a whole heap of extra interviews, video clips and pictures since the original report was posted. Go and have a wallow in the matches events!

That was an afternoon that will live with me for as long as I live. Simply unbelievable. As I said in the IBO Forum that evening, I walked down the stairs and out of the stadium in a daze. I was actually incoherent, until we got at least two hundred yards down the road and then I just couldn't stop smiling like an idiot.

In short it is a wonderful time to be a Saints fan

channonite
19.10.2014
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itsbeautifuloutside was founded in March 2011 to try to give an unbiased, unblinkered view of life as a supporter of Southampton Football Club. We are completely unofficial and have no links whatsoever with the club.