Friday, October 09, 2015


This time last week we had just arrived home from a week in glorious Devon with much to look back on.   And after a fraught week this week I had hoped that this weekend would provide something to look forward to.   But I hadn`t bet on England`s humiliating exit from the Rugby World Cup or the fact that, following their stunning 3-1 win at Stamford Bridge last weekend, the Saints wouldn`t have a game at all this coming weekend.

(Incidentally, it should not have come as a surprise that all the press reports following Chelsea`s home defeat were all about how awful Chelsea were (even if they weren`t) and all about the ranting ego masquerading as their manager;  hardly a word about how impressive Southampton were.)

I can`t say I`m looking forward to England playing their European Qualifier against Estonia this evening despite the inclusion of Saints` Ryan Bertrand and former Saints Theo Walcott, Nathaniel Clyne and Adam Lallana in the England starting line-up with Alex Oxtail-Chamberlain on the bench; how on earth are we going to get on without the inspirational (I think that`s the right word) presence of Wayne Rooney, I wonder?  The Rugby World Cup will be on, of course, but it won`t be the same without Lancaster`s Lions so I might have to turn Welsh in order to get interested.

Meanwhile, I content myself with following the fortunes of the other Saints players plying their international trade across the globe - the heroic Steven Davis captaining Northern Ireland to the Euro Finals last evening;  Shane Long scoring the winner for the Irish Republic against Germany;  Maya Yoshida helping Japan to a comfortable win over Syria; Virgil van Dijk playing for Holland;  Sadio Mane for Senegal; Jose Fonte and Cedric Soares for Portugal; Dusan Tadic for Serbia;  Graziano Pelle for Italy, along with a host of our Academy graduates playing for England Under 21s, Under 20s and other age groups.

So maybe the weekend is not entirely lost even if it just feels like it.

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