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Category: Sports

Dedicated to the Southampton Football Club and all the Saints FC fans.

October 15, 2019

Ep. 144- Writing, Wrestling, and Saints FC: My Conversation with Carl Anka of The Athletic

I’d be willing to say that the majority of Saints fans who are on Twitter, read about Saints online or listen to Saints related podcasts know, at least vaguely, who Carl Anka is. In the past two months, Carl has emerged as the newest, full-time professional writer covering Saints. Carl writes for theathletic.com and is exclusively writing about Southampton FC. The Athletic has compiled an elite group of journalists who cover all of the top flight and select teams in the Championship. They provide top-notch coverage and unique insight on all aspects of the club and sport. The opportunity to speak with Carl was an honor. And I took the opportunity to (hopefully) ask some questions that others have not, hopefully giving some of the same insight to Carl as Carl gives to the team (I likely failed, but anyway).

Our conversation covers everything from life in Southampton to reporting for The Athletic, working with editors, covering uncomfortable topics, video games and more. I had a blast, even though I was definitely showing the early signs of a sore throat and Skype was being Skype. Hopefully, it’s an enjoyable insightful episode…

If you want to get in touch with Carl or see more of him there are some links below. The Free Trial link is just that… the link titled “My Link” is a referral link from the Athletic. I am a paying subscriber and if you use that I get a kickback once you sign up. Both plans are offering 40% off for the year if you sign up annually. I should also say the Athletic covers a wide range of other sports and I’ve found the coverage all around to be great… I’m also really uncomfortable putting my own link in here, but whatever.

Follow Carl Anka below and check out his other work if you like this stuff.

 

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Credits and Stuff:

Until next time, cheers.

Matt

October 8, 2019

Ep. 143- Fighting Off the Blues, with Tom Murray of Alan March Sport

Sunday’s game against an in-form Chelsea was about as far from perfect as Saints have been under Ralph Hasenhuttl. In fact, it’s a reminder of what the team has looked like on the pitch under several previous managers. There’s no denying that we have plenty of things that need addressing, from the defense to a plan B. But, there’s also no way to look at the team and think Saints have not improved under Ralph at all. He’s far from a miracle worker, but there’s something about him that makes us (well, at least me) happy he’s here and somewhat happy with the job he’s doing. Sure, I’d love for us to be further along, but that’s not always realistic given the different constraints and things we are dealing with as a club.

Tom Murray (@T214Murray on Twitter) joins me this week to discuss the loss. He’s seen a fair few of them during his time as a commentator for Alan March Sport, as he's’ covered almost every home match since Saints introduced the Audio Description Commentary service last season. Tom as I discuss his duties, England vs Kosovo, I make a lot of bad jokes, we talk about Chelsea and answer your questions, all on this week’s show. Get in touch and let us know what you think!

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Credits and Stuff:

Until next time, cheers.

Matt

October 1, 2019

Ep. 142- Pound P*mpey Then Spurs It Up, with Luke Millard

We went from 4 goals against a pretty crap 11 men in an old stadium in front of a hostile crowd to 1 goal against 10 pretty good men in a stadium so fresh it still smells like new and was built for the acoustics but turns out the atmosphere wasn’t all that great… that was what Saints have been up to since the last episode. It’s been quite a ride, to say the least, and several fans have been along for it.

One of those fans is Luke Millard and he joins me this week to discuss the trip to Fratton Park and Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, the decisions, the chances, the euphoria and the frustration that so many of us experience in one way or another each week. You can find Luke on Instagram @millard505.

Special thanks to Luke for taking so much of his time to share with me (and you), and thank you for taking the time to listen! I hope you enjoy it!

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Credits and Stuff:

Until next time, 

Matt

September 24, 2019

Ep. 141- The Pride of the Southcoast, with Matt Beling

Let’s just say it, Friday night wasn’t great. Team selection, execution, performance, in the first half especially, was just plain bad. We’ve been living on the edge for some time, and, of all teams, Bournemouth were the ones to make us pay. Now, though, our focus turns to THE derby. P*mpey away on Tuesday night in the 3rd round of the EFL/Carabao Cup. The strongest team is a must (at least to us) and Ralph has stated he and the players are aware of the significance of the match. 

Joining me to discuss the loss to the Cherries and preview tonight’s clash with P*rtsmouth, is the man who ran @WeAreSouthampton (on Instagram) for so many years. Matt does the logo for the show and has graciously given me advice on everything from Photoshop (he’s very kind) to show structure and everything else. I celebrated episode 100 by having him on, and it’s been great to catch up with him for episode 141. 

If you’d like to contact Matt on Twitter, you can do it @wesouthampton. Matt is a great guy and, as you’ll hear in the intro, I can’t thank him enough for lending me his expertise on more than one occasion. I hope you enjoy the chat.

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Credits and Stuff:

Until next time, 

Matt

September 17, 2019

Ep. 140- Will the Real Moussa Djenepo Please Stand Up, with Lucy Highnett

Warning: the only thing longer than this episode is the time it takes for Vestergaard to turn and try to cover a right-winger bursting down the channel… I hope you enjoy it.

Saints secured their third successive away win (and our 3rd league match with one team ending the match with only 10 players on the pitch), away at Bramall Lane on Saturday. The game had it all. It was open, entertaining, and almost nobody would have thought it would finish with only a single goal. Djenepo went from wayward left wing-back to Malian Messi in the space of 1 change of formation, and gave us all a moment we won’t forget when he gave a kid in the crowd his shirt after the match, producing one of the most passionate fist shakes since my mom caught my brother and I blowing up lemons with firecrackers (like 2 years ago). 

The in-game management from Hasenhuttl was brilliant. The starting lineup, maybe not so much. Trying to put the game in perspective was difficult for me. I was so enthralled with the contest that I was afraid I missed some critical points of the match. Luckily, I had Lucy Highnett on the show to join me. Lucy lives in Sheffield and was at Bramall Lane to take in the match. 

Lucy (@lucyhighnett on Twitter) is a panel member on the Total Saints Podcast (@totalsaintspod on Twitter), and you can more of her and the guys by subscribing on iTunes, Soundcloud, or wherever you listen. Special thanks to Lucy as always. Truly a pleasure to chat again.

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Credits and Stuff:

Until next time, cheers.

Matt

September 10, 2019

Ep. 139- Talk of the Town, Top of the League, with Hayley Newman and Philippa Holden of Southampton Women’s FC

The international break might be in full effect, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any club football being played. The FA Women’s Super League kicked off this weekend with a number of derbies spread around the country, some being played in the men’s stadiums and almost all drawing big crowds. Building on the back of the World Cup this past summer, the FAWSL is looking to keep the interest in the sport growing, and the weekend wasn’t a bad start.

The interest in the Women’s game doesn’t stop at the top tier. The Southampton Women’s Football Club has noticed the swell in support as well. As Southampton’s longest-running women’s club, they’re happy to see people come out and support them as they battle for promotion this season against, among others, the women of the Southampton Football Club. 

This week I’m lucky to be joined by two members of the team. Hayley Newman is the media manager for Soton Women’ and Philippa Holden in a midfielder for the club who’s rise to the first team started more than 4 years ago. Hayley, Philippa and I all discuss the start of the season, matchday routines, take a couple of listener questions and throw around some light-hearted jokes about postcodes and such. Hayley and Philippa were both lovely to speak with and I hope you enjoy the episode. 

Philippa is still looking for a sponsor for the season. You can get in touch with her @philippaholden on Twitter, or email the club secretary below. Hayley doesn’t need sponsorship, but your support is always welcome. You can follow her on Twitter @NewmanHay. More links for the club are below. 

 

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Credits and Stuff:

 

Until next time, cheers.

Matt

September 3, 2019

Ep. 138- The Big Man is the Mane Man, with Rob Maddox

The first international break has arrived. The first 4 matches done. The opening home matches were never going to be easy. With both the reigning European Champions and, well, a team that used to be really good, a point or two would have accepted by most of the fan-base. After a disappointing opening day, doubt may have crept into the minds of some, but with 4 points through 4 matches entering the break, having advanced in the Carabao Cup, and having a couple of weeks to get guys healthy, overall things are not looking too bad. Could they be better? Absolutely. But we seem to be moving in the right direction. 

The club sent a number of players out on loan just before the close of the European window, but I didn’t talk about that with this week’s guest, Rob Maddox. Rob joins the show again having arrived back on the UK just in time to attend the Fulham match, try to shake the jet lag, and them discuss the United match with me. It’s always a pleasure to catch up with Rob and get his feelings on Saints and more. You can follow Rob on Twitter @jameslordprowse and o Instagram @RobMaddox_ (I can’t stress enough how much I enjoy Rob’s photography. It’s not Saints related but it’s totally worth a follow if you just need to see some beautiful images… and not of models or anything like that. If you want to see that just look at yourself in the mirror because you are beautiful, and you need to believe that). 

Anyway, Rob is a great guest, as always. Give him a follow and let us know what you think of the episode. Don’t miss the newsletter out next Friday. Be sure to subscribe below.  

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Credits and Stuff:

Until next time, 

Matt

August 27, 2019

Ep. 137- Delightful Djenepo. Beautiful Boufal. Bright in Brighton. With Ben Hernandez-Stroud of The Archers Road End

First clean sheet of the season. First goal for Djenepo. A debut for Danso. A back post tap in for Redmond. An assist for Boufal and a win for Hasenhuttl. 

Saints made difficult work against 10 man Brighton on Saturday. But, at the end of the day, a win is a win and 3 points on the road is nothing to sneeze at. Joining me to discuss the match, the arrival of the new opposition video analyst/assistant coach, Forster’s return to Celtic and more, is Ben Hernandez-Stroud of the Archers Road End. Ben is on Twitter @archersroadend as well as on Instagram and Facebook. Ben is currently taking a break from writing the blog, but when he comes back, you’ll want to make sure you are in touch with the blog. Until then, Twitter will have to suffice. 

Special thanks to Ben for coming on the show. It’s always great to catch up, and I can’t wait to do it again.

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Credits and Stuff:

 

Until next time, cheers.

Matt

August 20, 2019

Ep. 136- Lucky Little Liverpool, with Jay Grant of the Southampton Page

Saints fell to Liverpool at St. Mary’s over the weekend, a result that will come as a shock to absolutely no one in the football world. It leaves Saints with no points and only one goal scored through two Premier League matches, with two more fixtures coming before the first international break of the season. Saints, however, did play well for large parts of the match, dictating the game for long periods, and looking on par with Liverpool (even if they weren’t at their best). The game featured a lot of missed chances by both sides and Saints eventually walked away with positives to build on but no share of the points.

Joining me this week to discuss the match and some new developments in coverage is Jay from the  Southampton Page. The Southampton Page is the official partner of the show and just launched its YouTube Channel earlier this week. The first Matchday Experience will be up late on Saturday night after the Brighton match, but you can subscribe right now to make sure you don’t miss it (plus there’s an intro video there for you already). 

As always, thanks to Jay for all the support and for joining the show once again! And, thank you for listening! Your support is most important and it truly means a lot! 

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Credits and Stuff:

 

Until next time, cheers.

Matt

August 13, 2019

Ep. 135- Banged In Burnley, Now for Plan B. With Luke Osman of Read Southampton

The best laid plans…

After a pre-season that couldn’t have gone any better in many respects. The style of football developed greatly, the team seemed to jell. Players worked their way into and out of the team (Hi Charlie, Mario… and wherever you are Guido). The training trips, the warm weather, the pre-season matches, everything seemed to point towards Saints being better than they showed on Saturday. But, Saints are also much the same team (in terms of squad composition) as they were last year, and Saturday’s performance at Burnley showed it.

Luke Osman joins me this week to discuss the disappointing start to the season, as well as look at some changes happening around Read Southampton. We also answer some of your questions (thanks for sending them in) and more. 

If you don’t do so already, give Luke and Read Southampton a follow on Twitter, or send him an email if you are looking to potentially write for Read Southampton. 

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Credits and Stuff:

 

Until next time, cheers.

Matt