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Let's Try This

There are a lot of ways to communicate. From social media and text messaging, to actually talking with someone face-to-face. In a world where things tend to come and go in a matter of minutes. Where so many base their success on likes, or downloads, or influence, and where a change in the YouTube payment structure or Instagram algorithm may send you back to the drawing board, it takes some effort to be focused and thoughtful in what we do. 

That, for me, is what this is. From the website to this newsletter, the goal is to build a community around the club we all support and the show I spend a fair amount of time putting together, and which, I presume, you enjoy. It's to give people a chance to communicate with one another, showcase some of the talented writers in the Southampton FC community, and have some fun in the process.

This is the first ever newsletter, but the basic format will be to update on the things going on with the show and the team, bring you an article on the team you won't get anywhere else, perhaps look ahead to the next match and the next guest on the show, and let you know of future plans or events (if there are any).

Any feedback you have would be great as we go about crafting something that is both entertaining and informative, and not overly lengthy (I hope).

With all of that said, let's get into it.

Ep. 109- What Have We Learned, with Kurt Zottl

On episode 109 Kurt Zottl, host of the BSO podcast, joined me to discuss Saints performance against Cardiff City at St. Mary's. If you haven't checked it out yet, click here to visit the website and listen.

Each newsletter will contain one article that, in some way, pertains to the club. It may be a bit longer than some of the articles online, but that's on purpose. They aren't designed to be breaking news, though sometimes they may be match reports or previews, but I wanted to give some of the talented writers out there a chance to publish a piece that may not fit on other platforms. 
This week's article is written by Christian Candler. I'm honored to have Christian's writing included here, and his thoughtful approach to writing, Saints, and life in general, plus his history writing about the sport and the club, made him the perfect person to feature in the first edition of the newsletter. I hope you enjoy it.
-Matt

Our Lucky Rabbit's Foot?

My dad used to always tell me when we were discussing any sport, “Any team that wins a championship experiences at least a little bit of luck during the season.” Whether that was staying healthy, an unexpected drop off by another title challenger, or maybe a lucky play here or there to make results go the right way. After this past weekend as a Southampton fan, I think this might just be one of the unluckiest teams I’ve ever seen. Not a single bounce has gone our way, when we needed other team’s results to help us out, they haven’t, and with players like Bertrand, Lemina, and Ings chronically injured, it seems like nothing will go our way. If there’s an antithesis to my dad’s statement above, Southampton seems to exist in that space.

This week in Tenerife will make or break our season. I’m not usually a fan of blanket statements, but these next few games will really show what our players and Hasenhuttl are made of. Hasenhuttl will have seen the mental fragility that has plagued our team since Pellegrino was here, and his biggest task will be fixing this weakness. Our players are talented enough, I don’t think that’s ever been in question. Seeing them fall apart on the field due to mental lapses and not being able to hold onto leads has been the biggest thorn in our side, and only time will tell if Hasenhuttl can fix it. The board got the right hire, but was it too little, too late? The bad seeds that previous managers have planted are now infecting the entire crop, and the harvest is coming soon.

Ralph has already worked miracles with a depleted squad, the performances of players like Bednarek, Ward-Prowse, and Valery have been a welcome sight for the supporter’s sore eyes, but the mental weakness as a collective unit is a sickness that needs to be cured. When you have a sickness, you want to get the bad germs out so in a way it makes sense that Ralph would get rid of more players than he would bring in. I do think that Hasenhuttl wanted to bring in one or two players, and the lack of investment from the board has hindered us substantially. Cardiff sat back and asked our players to break them down, and for the full 90 minutes I begged for someone with creativity to come in and crack their defense. Redmond can’t do everything on his own.  Elyounoussi was supposed to be that guy, but whenever he steps on the field he seems to be a black hole for our attacks. If Hasenhuttl would have been able to bring in a creative spark, like Miguel Almiron, we probably would have won that game.

Looking ahead at the rest of the season, it’s hard to be optimistic, but I’ll leave you on some notes of optimism because I believe that being hopeful is the best way to look at life.

  1. We have Ralph Hasenhuttl as manager, and if there is anyone that can lead us out of this hole, he’s the man.

  2. Our young players have really stepped up. I don’t think I can point to one youth player that has come in under Hasenhuttl and said they’ve done a bad job. Valery was probably the best player on the field against Cardiff, and if they can keep performing they will give good competition as our players get healthy.

  3. Obafemi, Lemina, Armstrong, and Ings will return and give us a breath of fresh air as well. They’ll give our team a spark that we desperately need.

  4. The changing stadium atmosphere is good to see too. Even in the loss against Cardiff, the atmosphere was less negative than it has been during wins under previous managers.

Being a Southampton fan is nerve-wracking right now, but I wouldn’t want to support anyone else, or with anyone else. I do have belief that we will stay up, if just barely.

Christian Candler is on Twitter @candlerneuro, and you can find more of his writing at candler.us.

Preview- Ep.110 with Tom Murray of Alan March Sport

Saints went away for the week to get some warm weather training in. They are off this weekend, but it is the perfect time to chat with Saints AD Commentator Tom Murray. Tom and the rest of the team at Alan March Sport help make sure fans with visual impairments get a fantastsic description of the match. We'll talk everything from his process and preparation, to calling and commentating on the team he loves. If you have questions you would like me to discuss with Tom, general SaintsFC questions or specific audio and commentary questions, send them in via email here, or visit southamptondellivery.com or social media channels and let me know.

Match Meetup?

The United States of Southampton FC Page on Facebook recently posted the idea of Saints fans across the US getting together for a match. If you are a Saints fan and are interested in watching matches with others, be sure to check out the page at facebook.com/SaintsFCUSA.
Additionally, you can send an email to southamptondellivery@gmail.com and let us know where you watch and who you watch with!

You made it! That's it for this week's newsletter. We'll be back next Friday with more of the same, and a few tweaks as the team gets ready to face Arsenal and Fulham in a busy week of Premier League action. As always, thanks for supporting the show in all the ways you do, and thanks for reading this week's newsletter. 

If you enjoyed it, please help spread the word by passing it on to a friend and encouraging them to sign up by visiting southamptondellivery.com and choosing "newsletter" from the menu.

Until next time, remember that together, we march on!
-Matt
Copyright © 2019 Southampton Dellivery Podcast, All rights reserved.






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