This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
In between the sticks, Southampton have a bit of a problem.
Angus Gunn has made the No.1 shirt his own so far this season – starting all eight of the Saints’ Premier League games – although he has been far from solid.
The former Manchester City and Norwich glovesman has made errors in each of his last three league outings against Bournemouth, Tottenham and Chelsea, while he has also shipped the third-most goals in the Premier League with 15.
However, the fact that he is ahead of No.2 Alex McCarthy right now speaks volumes about the quality of Ralph Hasenhuttl’s options – the Austrian’s comments on his goalkeeping situation pretty much sum the problem up.
The former RB Leipzig boss said: “I think the last games from Angus haven’t been the best so far.
“I think he has shown this season a few important games for us where he kept clean sheets and saved us points for sure.
“I am in the good position that I have two goalkeepers that are on the same level.”
Hasenhuttl mentions that both shot-stoppers are “on the same level” – those four words pretty much sum the problem up at St Mary’s.
There’s no point having two keepers when neither is significantly better than the other – Southampton have a number of players aside from the keepers who aren’t a clear level above their teammates, which is the bulk of the issue.
If everyone in a red and white shirt is of average quality, then it’s not a positive to have a number of those players on the same level.
Is Jan Bednarek much better than Jannik Vestergaard?
Is Che Adams much better than Danny Ings?
Is Cedric a substantial upgrade on Yan Valery?
A lot of players at Southampton do feel very much on the same level – average. Hence why the Saints are currently sitting in 17th with just seven points out of a possible 24.
Contrary to what Hasenhuttl says about being “in the good position” of having two goalkeepers on the same level, that isn’t a positive if both men aren’t very good – a sentiment applicable to a number of Southampton players.