It’s the St Mary’s Stadium on Sunday afternoon as we face the Premier League’s leakiest ever (after the first 8 games of the season) defence. 24 goals shipped thus far with West Ham the latest to help themselves nicking four at the Boleyn last weekend. Surely if the Hammers can go goal crazy then we should be able to nick a couple? Hm.
Take the Saints sieve, add in Gallas’s 50p headers and Walker’s sleepwalking, chuck in a pinch of jet lag and hey presto, we should be in for a goal fest, especially if Nigel Adkins decides that attack is the best form of defence. Only Wigan have kept Southampton totally at bay so far this season so they do seem to have goals in them, just not enough to make up for whatever damage has been done at the other end. Gaston Ramirez is apparently out as is Frazer Richardson whilst Danny Fox is doubtful.
Us? Well…Bale’s back! Dembélé might be back! So mostly good news apart from…Adebayor’s bad back! Thursday’s underwhelming display in Slovenia will have done little for morale, it will though have mentally nudged the Chelsea defeat towards the archive folder. AVB could ring a few changes if he felt like it. Lloris’s handling, Falque’s lively display plus the return to fitness of Naughton may all have given the manager food for thought. Bale’s return will boost the side whether it’ll be enough on its own to lighten some of the stodge we’ve been witness to, especially in the first half of games, is another question. Maybe swapping a couple of players will give a bit of freshness.
Given our fixtures in November, three points here and against Wigan next week are needed if we’re to avoid going backwards too much heading towards the season’s halfway point. We’ve a poor record at Southampton but if we can match their work rate, avoid the silly mistakes and tighten up we stand a good chance of coming away with the points.
Lee Mason is down to referee. COYS.
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