Opposition View – Southampton

Saints fan George Galpin answers our questions ahead of Saturday’s match up at St Mary’s…

What do you make of your start to the season?
Slow. It’s either been good going forward but slapstick in defence, or solid yet incredibly boring. It’s been a slight concern how the defence has gone from watertight to prone to the odd error or three.

You departed the Europa League before the group stage, were you disappointed by that and how do the fans feel about this in general?
Very disappointed. The fans had really embraced the Europa League, as I’m sure Swansea fans had, so to fall short to Midtjylland was a kick in the teeth.

Going route one against a team that was, no offence intended, a team that shouldn’t have caused us too many problems has had a bit of an effect on trust on Koeman; that’ll need to be rectified.

You’ve lost more first team regulars since your last meeting, how disappointed were you by this and were you impressed by the new players that have arrived?
Not really disappointed if I’m honest, purely because it was almost inevitable that they would go. The only one who seemed sort of likely to stay was Alderweireld, but that was a bizarre situation.

Some of the replacements look very good (Cedric, Romeu, Van Dijk), some of them look okay or haven’t appeared much (Stekelenburg, Clasie), but most of just don’t seem to really excite the fans quite like Tadić or Alderweireld did. They’re just solid but not  special, if that makes sense.

What are your expectations this term?
At the start of the season, I don’t think I’d have been expecting too much to have thought mid-table and an Europa run was reasonable. Now? Mid-table, but no Europa. Shame

What do you make if Swansea and which players if any do you fear?
I see Swansea as a very similar club to Saints in how they operate and like to play football, and both should be admired because of they seem to better bigger clubs like Newcastle and Aston Villa.

I really like the signing of Andre Ayew; not exactly a ‘free’ transfer as many have made out because of his signing on fee, but he’s looked a superb player, and a real match winner.

Predict the score and where both teams will finish?
I think Saints might just edge it 2-1… Saints 12th, Swansea 8th