The following is a letter received by the Echo from a Saints season-ticket holder:

Having sat through most of our games, home and away, I know one thing…this is going to lead to relegation. Our time in that Premier League is going to be very short lived and may well end in an embarrassment. We managed our promotion last season because of momentum, our resources and two players, Lambert and Lallana. We were by no means the outstanding team in that league.

Now, Cortese and his nonsense about Europe was always pie in the sky and has had a damaging effect on our expectations.

After our fiasco at Upton Park, none of us can be under any illusions any more. We are in a horrible survival scrap for which we are ill equipped. Adkins did wonders to take us this far in so short a time but we do need to question a few of his decisions this season.

  • Our defence was suspect in the Championship. We overcame that by simply scoring more goals that the opposition. Yet we all knew this wasn’t going to work for one minute in the Premiership. WHY oh WHY didn’t he strengthen our back four?
  • Buying Sharp and Rodrigues seems baffling. Even more so, when Sharp is then loaned out. l His team selections seems equally strange. Lambert is our talisman. When Adkins wants to play him only second half, make sure he has wingers who can give him the ammunition.
  • Adkins leaves his substitutions too late. I was at Everton and to start changing things in the 80th minute when we are 3 – 1 down and well beaten smacks of incompetence. As for the Man U game……
  • Lallana is not captain material. At Everton we were sat pitch level, and it was noticeable how little, or no, screaming and shouting there was in our back for. No communication at all.

Where do we go from here? Should Adkins go? If he does get the push his successor is still left with a good Championship side but very average, if not bad, Premiership side.

He is never going to make that back four perform miracles. Do we hang on to the transfer window and hope we are not too far adrift so we can sort the defence out? Does NA have a plan B?

The simple arithmetic is frightening gain a point we have to score three!

Are the fans going to stay patient? I, for one, can handle a few seasons in the Championship as long as there is a long term, coherent strategy. The Premier League is great if you have very, very deep pockets (for clubs and fans alike). It is not a level playing field. Should we be a yo yo club for a few seasons and stay in a healthy financial state, I shall not complain in the slightest.

I am staying loyal for the simple reason that I cannot see a new manager do any better. But my patience is wearing thin.

Martin van Tuyl Kingsland, season ticket holder.

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