Why tomorrow is just crucial for Saints

First published in Sport Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Sports Writer

Saints can go into Christmas in high spirits if they beat Sunderland at St Mary’s tomorrow.

A win over the Black Cats would see Nigel Adkins’ men enter the festivities with a sense of satisfaction.

After a tough start to the campaign, Saints have come good.

Their record is not dissimilar to Sunderland’s in that they have garnered most of their points from the kind of games they really need to win to keep their heads above water.

Against the top half of the table teams it has been a tougher story.

Saints’ record against the top teams is the worst in the top flight.

But Saints are not going to stay up by beating the Manchester clubs, Chelsea, Arsenal or Tottenham.

They are going to stay up by beating the likes of Villa, QPR, Newcastle and Reading, and so far they have done just that.

Saints are 13th in the table of results against the teams in the bottom half, and that little statistic is a very big positive right now.

Nobody should be under any illusions as to how tricky the second half of the season will be.

That’s why a win tomorrow is so important.

Saints have already won two winnable home games in recent weeks, keeping clean sheets against Newcastle and Reading.

If they can follow that up with three points against Martin O’Neil’s men at St Mary’s, then they stand in good shape.

There was much talk early in the season about Saints’ undoubtedly tough start to the Premier League programme.

It didn’t go well and it has only been recent times that have seen an upsurge in results, position and confidence.

After Sunderland, however, things get markedly tougher.

At that point Saints face a run of fixtures to the end of the season that sees them face most of the teams around them away from home, and most of the teams that are doing better at St Mary’s.

Saints are in a far better position as a team now, and will surely strengthen still further in January.

That gives them every chance of survival.

But three points against Sunderland feels important.

It might well be that they remain out of the bottom three no matter what the result, but in the context of the season it is bigger than that.

Victory would provide a huge mental boost, and a timely addition to the points tally.

Once tomorrow’s game rolls past, Saints have to travel away to Fulham and Stoke, take on Arsenal at home, Aston Villa away, Everton at home and Manchester United away in the league before the end of January.

That is a really tough run.

It’s not to say Saints cannot get much out of those games. If they continue their current improvement they could do.

But you would not expect them to gather a whole host of points from those matches.

That’s why Sunderland is so important.

Beat them and the base is there to weather the latest bump in the fixture list and not get too downhearted about things if the results are, understandably, a little mixed during that tough period.

Fail to win and you start to pile the pressure on to get points from those hard games to avoid getting cut adrift.

Just think how good the turkey would taste next week with another three points on the board ...

Comments (12)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:25pm Fri 21 Dec 12

Puddletown Saint says...

Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy

We're the Northam
We're the Northam
We're the Northam over 'ere......

2-0 Rickie and Spider.
Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy We're the Northam We're the Northam We're the Northam over 'ere...... 2-0 Rickie and Spider. Puddletown Saint
  • Score: 0

2:25pm Fri 21 Dec 12

SanFranciscoSaint says...

I may be in California (since 99) but I still get to see all the Saints games, and I will be cheering them on as if I was there. We REALLY need this win. In Nigel we trust. COYR!!!!
I may be in California (since 99) but I still get to see all the Saints games, and I will be cheering them on as if I was there. We REALLY need this win. In Nigel we trust. COYR!!!! SanFranciscoSaint
  • Score: 0

2:28pm Fri 21 Dec 12

Dickosfc says...

Got to get in early otherwise the thread gets filled up with complete garbage and not about Southampton Football Club!!
.
This is a really good article. A win tomorrow is vital! As stated above, if we fail to win then the pressure is mounted to get results in the harder games. For me Saints play better when not under pressure. I hope Adkins goes for it tomorrow and not play it safe too much. J Rod for me doesn't work on te left!
Got to get in early otherwise the thread gets filled up with complete garbage and not about Southampton Football Club!! . This is a really good article. A win tomorrow is vital! As stated above, if we fail to win then the pressure is mounted to get results in the harder games. For me Saints play better when not under pressure. I hope Adkins goes for it tomorrow and not play it safe too much. J Rod for me doesn't work on te left! Dickosfc
  • Score: 0

2:40pm Fri 21 Dec 12

Beer Monster says...

Puddletown Saint wrote:
Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy

We're the Northam
We're the Northam
We're the Northam over 'ere......

2-0 Rickie and Spider.
We're the Kingsland,
we're the Kingsland,
we're the Kingsland Northern Wing...

I miss that - the only decent chants at Tynecastle are usually from the away fans.

I'm going for 3-0 to Saints, Punch to score first
[quote][p][bold]Puddletown Saint[/bold] wrote: Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy We're the Northam We're the Northam We're the Northam over 'ere...... 2-0 Rickie and Spider.[/p][/quote]We're the Kingsland, we're the Kingsland, we're the Kingsland Northern Wing... I miss that - the only decent chants at Tynecastle are usually from the away fans. I'm going for 3-0 to Saints, Punch to score first Beer Monster
  • Score: 0

2:47pm Fri 21 Dec 12

saintkenny says...

a win is a must gaston has looked pretty usefull playing on the left .sunderland lack pace i would keep him there and start with lee and ricky .he played well for the development side .very fast .unless na decides to play fox in front of shaw .may have a similar balance to clyne and puncheon .who link up so well will cause any premier team problems.at the end of the day we have pulled the points back after a difficult start .now to the target a point a game.and we have vastly improved .nigel as now become more aware learning the premier league .and knows what we need ,his gamble buying clyne has paid off .and the confidence to put shaw in the thick of it .it is a young side that will only keep improving playing at this level .and with the stadium soon be to increased to 48.000 .the future is bright for us .not like the blew few who keep going on about the past .but maybe that has some thing to do with they have no future .they come on here but who cares .like if any of us gives a toss
a win is a must gaston has looked pretty usefull playing on the left .sunderland lack pace i would keep him there and start with lee and ricky .he played well for the development side .very fast .unless na decides to play fox in front of shaw .may have a similar balance to clyne and puncheon .who link up so well will cause any premier team problems.at the end of the day we have pulled the points back after a difficult start .now to the target a point a game.and we have vastly improved .nigel as now become more aware learning the premier league .and knows what we need ,his gamble buying clyne has paid off .and the confidence to put shaw in the thick of it .it is a young side that will only keep improving playing at this level .and with the stadium soon be to increased to 48.000 .the future is bright for us .not like the blew few who keep going on about the past .but maybe that has some thing to do with they have no future .they come on here but who cares .like if any of us gives a toss saintkenny
  • Score: 0

3:17pm Fri 21 Dec 12

CB FRY LIVES says...

Martin O'neill is a chip off his old manager-BRIAN CLOUGH-block.Big time talkers who get rattled when the going gets tough.So lets set about sunderland with pace and plenty of vim and vigour lets get our own back with blarney man Martin for the time Notts Forrest beat us in the league cup final at Wembley.
COYR
Martin O'neill is a chip off his old manager-BRIAN CLOUGH-block.Big time talkers who get rattled when the going gets tough.So lets set about sunderland with pace and plenty of vim and vigour lets get our own back with blarney man Martin for the time Notts Forrest beat us in the league cup final at Wembley. COYR CB FRY LIVES
  • Score: 0

3:17pm Fri 21 Dec 12

Southampton boy says...

saintkenny wrote:
a win is a must gaston has looked pretty usefull playing on the left .sunderland lack pace i would keep him there and start with lee and ricky .he played well for the development side .very fast .unless na decides to play fox in front of shaw .may have a similar balance to clyne and puncheon .who link up so well will cause any premier team problems.at the end of the day we have pulled the points back after a difficult start .now to the target a point a game.and we have vastly improved .nigel as now become more aware learning the premier league .and knows what we need ,his gamble buying clyne has paid off .and the confidence to put shaw in the thick of it .it is a young side that will only keep improving playing at this level .and with the stadium soon be to increased to 48.000 .the future is bright for us .not like the blew few who keep going on about the past .but maybe that has some thing to do with they have no future .they come on here but who cares .like if any of us gives a toss
What do you know about the new/increase that will not happen for a couple of seasons yet,yes we need to win tomorrow and I would like to see Tan Lee on the park not Rod he just is not storng too easly pussed of the ball still in NA i trust COYR's
[quote][p][bold]saintkenny[/bold] wrote: a win is a must gaston has looked pretty usefull playing on the left .sunderland lack pace i would keep him there and start with lee and ricky .he played well for the development side .very fast .unless na decides to play fox in front of shaw .may have a similar balance to clyne and puncheon .who link up so well will cause any premier team problems.at the end of the day we have pulled the points back after a difficult start .now to the target a point a game.and we have vastly improved .nigel as now become more aware learning the premier league .and knows what we need ,his gamble buying clyne has paid off .and the confidence to put shaw in the thick of it .it is a young side that will only keep improving playing at this level .and with the stadium soon be to increased to 48.000 .the future is bright for us .not like the blew few who keep going on about the past .but maybe that has some thing to do with they have no future .they come on here but who cares .like if any of us gives a toss[/p][/quote]What do you know about the new/increase that will not happen for a couple of seasons yet,yes we need to win tomorrow and I would like to see Tan Lee on the park not Rod he just is not storng too easly pussed of the ball still in NA i trust COYR's Southampton boy
  • Score: 0

3:31pm Fri 21 Dec 12

Alicesdad says...

Merry Christmas everybody and a Happy New Year ...
Merry Christmas everybody and a Happy New Year ... Alicesdad
  • Score: 0

6:11pm Fri 21 Dec 12

insane saint says...

Beer Monster wrote:
Puddletown Saint wrote:
Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy

We're the Northam
We're the Northam
We're the Northam over 'ere......

2-0 Rickie and Spider.
We're the Kingsland,
we're the Kingsland,
we're the Kingsland Northern Wing...

I miss that - the only decent chants at Tynecastle are usually from the away fans.

I'm going for 3-0 to Saints, Punch to score first
we are the chapel
we are the chapel
we are the chapel over here

we are the only ones that sing in the chapel we need more

NOW COME ON GET BEHIND THE SAINTS

3-0 THE SAINTS

TOGETHER AS ONE

COYR
[quote][p][bold]Beer Monster[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Puddletown Saint[/bold] wrote: Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy We're the Northam We're the Northam We're the Northam over 'ere...... 2-0 Rickie and Spider.[/p][/quote]We're the Kingsland, we're the Kingsland, we're the Kingsland Northern Wing... I miss that - the only decent chants at Tynecastle are usually from the away fans. I'm going for 3-0 to Saints, Punch to score first[/p][/quote]we are the chapel we are the chapel we are the chapel over here we are the only ones that sing in the chapel we need more NOW COME ON GET BEHIND THE SAINTS 3-0 THE SAINTS TOGETHER AS ONE COYR insane saint
  • Score: 0

6:17pm Fri 21 Dec 12

DisplacedFan says...

SanFran, I am in San Diego. How do you see our team every week?
SanFran, I am in San Diego. How do you see our team every week? DisplacedFan
  • Score: 0

8:10pm Fri 21 Dec 12

RedArmy1 says...

NORTHAM-KINGSLAND-IT
CHEN-CHAPEL ...

LET'S MAKE SOME NOISE TOMORROW.

3 POINTS AND THE WIN - THEN UP TO FULHAM.

OUT TO THE PUBS FOR A FESTIVE BEER FIRST.

WE ARE RED ARMY.
THE PRIDE AND THE PASSION.
NORTHAM-KINGSLAND-IT CHEN-CHAPEL ... LET'S MAKE SOME NOISE TOMORROW. 3 POINTS AND THE WIN - THEN UP TO FULHAM. OUT TO THE PUBS FOR A FESTIVE BEER FIRST. WE ARE RED ARMY. THE PRIDE AND THE PASSION. RedArmy1
  • Score: 0

10:56pm Fri 21 Dec 12

ButtyIoWSaint says...

insane saint wrote:
Beer Monster wrote:
Puddletown Saint wrote:
Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy

We're the Northam
We're the Northam
We're the Northam over 'ere......

2-0 Rickie and Spider.
We're the Kingsland,
we're the Kingsland,
we're the Kingsland Northern Wing...

I miss that - the only decent chants at Tynecastle are usually from the away fans.

I'm going for 3-0 to Saints, Punch to score first
we are the chapel
we are the chapel
we are the chapel over here

we are the only ones that sing in the chapel we need more

NOW COME ON GET BEHIND THE SAINTS

3-0 THE SAINTS

TOGETHER AS ONE

COYR
We're the Itchen,
We're the Itchen,
We're the Itchen over ere.

I too miss this old favourite.
When sung properly, In which I mean all 4 stands taking turns to sing. It gets the hairs on the back of my neck standing. Love seeing the reaction of the away support.

I've not heard anything like it being sung by other teams.

Is it Saturday yet?

COYRAWA
[quote][p][bold]insane saint[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Beer Monster[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Puddletown Saint[/bold] wrote: Three points vital tomorrow. Lets play high up the pitch - score early (twice) and keep that clean sheet - Easy We're the Northam We're the Northam We're the Northam over 'ere...... 2-0 Rickie and Spider.[/p][/quote]We're the Kingsland, we're the Kingsland, we're the Kingsland Northern Wing... I miss that - the only decent chants at Tynecastle are usually from the away fans. I'm going for 3-0 to Saints, Punch to score first[/p][/quote]we are the chapel we are the chapel we are the chapel over here we are the only ones that sing in the chapel we need more NOW COME ON GET BEHIND THE SAINTS 3-0 THE SAINTS TOGETHER AS ONE COYR[/p][/quote]We're the Itchen, We're the Itchen, We're the Itchen over ere. I too miss this old favourite. When sung properly, In which I mean all 4 stands taking turns to sing. It gets the hairs on the back of my neck standing. Love seeing the reaction of the away support. I've not heard anything like it being sung by other teams. Is it Saturday yet? COYRAWA ButtyIoWSaint
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree