I never thought I would forgive Ronald Koeman. For years he was a man I hated because on Wednesday October 13, 1993 he contributed to the end of England’s World Cup qualification campaign leaving them with no place at the 1994 World Cup.
I was 14 years old and devastated. England, having been semi-finalists just three years previously would not be at the World Cup, it was almost unthinkable and it was Koeman’s fault.
He escaped with only a yellow card for a cynical challenge on David Platt, which many thought should have been a sending off and a penalty. Having re-watched the footage this morning it was certainly a red card, and Koeman has since said that he was expecting to be sent off himself, but the initial contact was outside the box.
One of Ronald Koeman’s first tasks as Saints boss may be to oversee some outgoings from the squad, assess it and then replace the departed and generally strengthen.
The World Cup is a mere eight games old, but here are the five players that I have decided (on a series of whims) that the Dutchman should think about bringing in….
1. Daley Blind (Holland)
For me the star of the Dutch demolition of Spain. Perhaps won’t get the credit that Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben will, but the full-back cum midfielder put in an immaculate performance. Would be a more than acceptable replacement for Luke Shaw. Could Saints lure a player from Ajax?
2. Stefan de Vrij (Holland)
De Vrij is a former Koeman cohort from Feyenoord and has been…
Today is a day that should be all about the celebration of the ‘beautiful’ game. For today marks the start of the World Cup.
As a Saints fan though, very little seems ‘beautiful’ about football at the moment. Tonight we were looking forward to seeing centre-half Dejan Lovren show what he can do on the world stage for Croatia against Neymar’s Brazil but that has now been soured.
You see, despite a season of chest tapping, passion and seemingly falling in love with Southampton, Lovren is the latest Saints player to confirm he is looking to leave (if reports are to be believed). Really? Another that would leave a bitter taste in the mouths of the fans were he to leave. The reason’s cited would seem to be a desire to play…
With each day that passes without a managerial appointment at St. Mary’s, the Southampton fanbase grows restless, paranoid and unreasonable.
For a while now all the evidence has suggested that Dutch legend and chief England tormentor of 1993 Ronald Koeman will be the new man at the helm. Saints fans have accepted that and are rightly overjoyed. Koeman is a manager of substance who would arguably be the most successful manager in the Premier League outside of Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal if (when) he joins.
He has managed across three different European Leagues and won eight trophies, leading Benfica to the quarter-finals of the Champions League in the process. You might argue that he is actually too successful to take over at plucky old Saints, but I for one would take it as concrete evidence that the board mean…
At times football can be a curious and underhand business, and the new ‘Saints summer saga’ that is the future of captain Adam Lallana is starting to leave a bitter taste in the mouths of all involved.
It is difficult to question the ‘loyalty’ of Lallana, after all he has been at the club a long time, and played in the first team for eight seasons, sticking with us through the drop to League One and being instrumental in the rise back to the Premier League. I’m not sure many Saints fans would actually begrudge him the chance to go and play at the highest level, his ability certainly demands it. But there are ways of going about it.
Having rejected Liverpool’s £20million and £25m bids (which are largely made up…
We hoped this day would never come. In the most surprising transfer of the summer so, Southampton talisman Rickie Lambert is set to join Liverpool today.
It tells you everything about how much Lambert is loved and respected amongst the Saints fanbase by seeing how they have reacted to this news. They are pleased for him. This is his dream move and categorically his last chance to play for the club he’s loved his whole life, as disappointed as we will be to see him go, no one can begrudge him this.
It is difficult to think of any other transfer that has been so mutually beneficial than Lambert’s £1million move to St. Mary’s in August 2009. Saints got a fantastic return in goals, assists, promotions and a trophy, the forward’s contribution has been second to none, literally. In…
After Mauricio Pochettino decided to become the next man to get sacked by Daniel Levy he wrote an open letter to the fans of Saints thanking them for his 18 months at the club. This is my open reply,
Thank you for the last 16 months as manager of Southampton Football Club, that’s right 16, you might want to check your maths on that one. It was a pleasure to support you and your coaching staff given that you gave us what, it has to be said, is some of the most attractive football I have ever seen at St. Mary’s, possibly anywhere in the Premier League.
You say ‘We have been on an incredible journey’ like it’s over. It’s far from over Mo, you were just a stop a long the way. Like a service station…
It’s been somewhat of a chaotic start to the close season for Southampton, but is it all a storm in a teacup?
Football fans are quick to fear the worst, especially those of a club like ours. We’ve been through the worst already, we know how it feels and we don’t want to suffer it again. We are naturally pessimistic. Our history is littered with seeing our best players sold on and ‘Little old Southampton’ doing what they can to survive in the shark tank that is the Premier League.
The last few seasons have perhaps stunted our own opinion of ourselves and thus meant that any negative press hurts more now than it ever has before. We seem to have even shaken the first word of our media name. ‘Struggling Southampton’ and…
When Nicola Cortese left Southampton in January there were mixed opinions among the Southampton fanbase.
Many were happy to see him go having never warmed to his ruthless style and his ‘disrespect’ of the club’s history. Others were worried about what this meant for the club’s future, having progressed season by season under the Italian.
Since the new board have taken their places they have done so with an air of ‘optimistic caution’. They were quick to point out that the financial situation left behind by Cortese was ‘difficult’, though based on the TV money coming in next season it didn’t look so bad to me.
They have also been actively engaging with the fans, something Cortese was criticised for not doing. Rekindling lost relationships with club legends, hinting at a return to stripes and club traditions and even subsidising tickets…