In the build-up to this weekends clash between Southampton and Bournemouth at Dean Court, manager Mark Hughes has spoken about one of two Achilles Heels we still have at the club following last years struggles.
Namely, we leak goals like a sieve at the back and at the other end of the pitch, we struggle to hit the proverbial barn door with a banjo.
We head into the game sat in 16th place in the Premier League table having only scored six, but conceding 14 and we remain in search of our second win of the season.
Speaking to Sky Sports ahead of the game, Hughes wasn’t discussing anything that hadn’t been patently obvious to anyone but it’s hard to feel there wasn’t an undercurrent of ‘not his fault’.
“Clearly the end game is getting the ball in the back of the net and that’s what wins you games, it goes without saying. They are all difficult fixtures and you have to factor that in and in all those games we have created chances. It’s not as though we not getting shots off. I think if you look at the amount of shots we’ve had in the season to date it’s up there with everybody. It’s just our conversion rate we need to increase. If we do that and we convert more of the chances we create and the shots we take we will score more goals and win more games.”
He is right to point out opposition lately, but talking up our chances at goal is a bit of a distraction for me. He’s also absolutely right to point out it’s down to the strikers to improve and show more composure when chances come their way, but with more of a defensive mind to our play plus starting XI selections when plenty of fans feel better choices have been stuck on the bench, it can’t all be laid at the door of the players.
Just as it shouldn’t be solely laid at the door of the manager as it often is in football.
But Hughes does need to ask himself what improvements he can make as well.