Saints must stop shipping goals
Seven games in to the Premier League season and Southampton have scored enough goals that should put them in a midtable position around the likes of Swansea, Newcastle and Fulham. However, a defence that has leaked no less than 20 goals (the most conceded by any team of the campaign so far) means that they currently sit in 17th place with just 4 points on the board from a possible 21.
October 8th, 2012
The Saints have arguably had the hardest start to the season of any team, having already faced Manchester City, Manchester United, Arsenal and Everton. Manager Nigel Adkins now faces the task of stopping the flow of goals going in at the wrong end of the pitch, whilst still maintaining enough balance to the team that will allow Southampton to keep scoring. A tough job, indeed.
As an attacking team, Southampton have proved they can score against the best the Premier League has to offer, having taken the lead against City, United and Everton before going on to lose those games. In fact, Southampton have led games a whopping five times this season (City, United, Villa, Everton and Fulham) but have only gone on to win one and draw one of those fixtures.
The inability to see out games and shut up shop is a big problem. If Southampton hope to avoid the drop they will have to find a way to stop conceding so many goals and start making themselves difficult to beat. As it currently stands, it’s difficult to see the Saints keeping a clean sheet in any game, which keeps piling the pressure on the whole team to keep scoring goals.
That’s a task that will be even harder over the coming weeks, with news now circulating that record summer signing Gaston Ramirez is out for up to six weeks. Fans will be hoping that captain Adam Lallana can start to put in the performances that we all know he is capable of. The attacking midfielder has the skill and creativity to unlock Premier League defences but is yet to hit top form this season.