Premier League action today at St. Mary’s Stadium when Southampton welcomes Newcastle in battle for the important points.
Southampton showed signs of life in recent matches. They have managed to beat QPR in the last round, and left them at the bottom of the table. They showed a mature game and dominated throughout the match. However, the question remains whether the QPR was too bad, or they really progressed. The main problem remains the defense, because they still do not manage to keep a clean sheet. It was the twelfth match in the league in which they failed to do so. Thirty goals against is the worst performance of all the teams in the league, and it seems that Southampton boss Nigel Adkins tried everything but failed to make them look more solid. In that field they have no help from goalie Gazzaniga who received 10 goals in six Premier League games for Southampton, and looks very funny and unconvincing in goal. On the other hand it seems that the attack is not what they lack, and they tend to be very dangerous as many teams have experienced so far. Adkins has almost a fully-fit squad to choose from against Newcastle, and on the wings of last week’s victory will surely go for all three points.
Newcastle finished last season in fifth place which was a great achievement, and it has brought them the opportunity to compete this season in Europe. It is a privilege and a great experience for the players and the fans, but it carries its own consequences. They have just three wins in the previous part of the championship, and due to the busy schedule the injuries are piling up. Manager Alan Pardew goes back to St Mary’s and one of his former clubs with a lot of problems on his back. They have lost two consecutive games where they were the hosts, and now must seek redemption away from home. It will be difficult without Ben Arfa, Cabaye, Coloccini, Ameobi, Obertan, but they have no choice but to go for the win. Especially since they face another difficult away game in three days, when they will face even heavier opponent as Stoke. What is a good thing for Pardew is that Papiss Cisse will probably be able to play. In tandem with Ba they are always dangerous, and they need just a little space to make a ridiculous defense even funnier.
I love these matches when I’m sure there will be no excessive calculations. Both teams have a win as an imperative, and both will not wait a moment. If we add that both have good attacks and sometimes ridiculous defenses, then we have a recipe for a lot of goals and possibility to enjoy the real football.