Ralph Hasenhuttl’s tenure at Southampton got started last weekend as he recovered from his opening loss to Cardiff City with a surprise victory over Arsenal.
The former RB Leipzig boss has a hell of a job on his hands but what he does have is the basis of a solid team. If he can keep that foundation fit combined with some luck along the way, Southampton could well escape relegation and could even be targeting Newcastle in 14th.
At the weekend, summer arrival, Danny Ings scored two goals while Charlie Austin also chipped in with a goal to win the game for Saints. Shane Long also came on in the game but once again, he failed to score. The Republic of Ireland international has failed to score in the league this season and last year, he only scored twice in 30 games. With his poor scoring in mind, Hasenhuttl should look to academy graduate, Michael Obafemi to fill the third-choice role for Southampton.
The 18-year-old forward made his debut for the club last season after impressing for the under-18 side. He scored nine goals for the under-18s last season, while also scoring three in nine games for the under-23 side.
The youngster, who can play on the wing has blistering pace but as seen by his impressive goalscoring, when he’s in on goal he has the ability to finish. It will take time to hit top form in the Premier League but such is his talent that he needs to be given a chance in the first-team.
Moreover, with the new manager installing a 5-2-3 system, Obafemi would be ideally suited in playing in one of the forward positions off the main striker.
At 18, he’s still incredibly young and doesn’t need to be rushed into the first XI but as the season progresses, we should definitely start to see the Republic of Ireland pick up more minutes ahead of Long.