So this season isn’t really going to plan, is it?
It’s still early days but the signs aren’t great. Lacklustre performances, several key players out injured and defensive calamities – just where will it end?
Hopefully it’ll end today, particularly after the confidence boosting last-gasp victory over Accrington Stanley in the EFL Cup earlier this week. Dimitri Payet’s trademark free-kick dug us all out of a bit of rut, not least Slaven Bilic, and you have to hope it will have given the players the confidence to push on.
On to the visit of Southampton; it’s another game where Bilic is going to have to make do with playing players out of position.
Masuaku has been ruled out for around six weeks, which means we don’t have a fit left-back to select. Angelo Ogbonna can play there if needed, but it’s not ideal.
Going forward we’re superb, defensively we’re woeful. That needs to change against Southampton on Sunday but with so many injuries at the back, it’s hard to envisage seeing us having success in that department at this stage.
Regardless of all that, though, this starting XI should easily beat Southampton…