London: Southampton’s floundering footballers have been put on alert by new manager Ralph Hasenhuettl, who has hinted a number of the squad will likely be shown the door in January.
The former RB Leipzig coach, appointed this week to save the Saints from relegation, indicated he would use the transfer window to offload some players who do not suit his high-energy style.
“I think the squad is very big,” the former Austrian international striker said. “So we have a lot of positions where we have too many players and maybe one or the other is leaving us and we bring something new.
“I have spoken with the chairman about that and they do everything to help my wishes.”
With just nine points from their opening 15 matches, Southampton are above bottom side Fulham and 19th-placed Burnley only on goal difference. A win when they visit Cardiff on Saturday would see them leapfrog the Welsh club, two places above them with two points more.
Elsewhere, while Liverpool ran out comfortable winners of both league encounters against Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth last season, Saturday’s early fixture is a tricky one their fans will be viewing with no little trepidation. Ryan Fraser, Joshua King and Callum Wilson are like a similarly menacing cut-price version of Liverpool trio Sadio Mane (an injury concern for this game), Mohammad Salah and Roberto Firmino. They are capable of wreaking all sorts of havoc with their speed, precision and borderline telepathy.
Unbeaten Liverpool are clinging on in the title race — scoring deep into added time against Everton last week and recovering from a goal down to beat Burnley on Wednesday to move just two points behind City.