Let’s talk Danny Ings.
He was back to his 2019/20 best at the weekend.
First up, his assist for Armstrong’s goal.
It came at a crucial time.
We’d just watched Burnley route-one us in the most depressing way.
I was preparing to put the remote through the TV.
But then, out of very little, we’re back in it.
Thanks to Stuart, of course, but also thanks to a bit of ingenuity from Danny.
He knows exactly what he’s going to do before the ball has reached his feet.
Quick look over the shoulder.
He notices Armstrong making the third-man run between the Burnley centre backs.
A flick off the outside of the right boot into the space.
Our coiffured Scot does the rest.
And then the equaliser…
Only the very best in the league have the composure and skill to bag a goal of that quality.
In that situation most players try to pick out the far corner across the keeper.
But Danny recognised the defender was going to over-commit. He did the same to Toby Alderweireld last season.
A cut inside, Tarkowski sent for a hotdog, and the angle becomes much more favourable.
A top class 45 minutes from our talisman dragged us back into a game that looked dead and buried.
The type of performance that should go some way to re-inflating his price tag.
We may not like to hear it, but clubs are watching. Clubs like Man City. Clubs you probably do not turn down.
And the stories are not going away as long as that contract remains unsigned.
In recent weeks there seemed to have been a shift among the fanbase, at least among those I follow on Twitter.
In the past, selling Danny was very much unthinkable.
But this season has been a frustrating one. Fewer goals and more injuries.
It’s led some to suggest we might be best off cashing in.
Sunday was a reminder of what we’d be losing. The type of elite striker we are extremely unlikely to replace in the summer transfer window.
Danny’s ambitious. He wants to play at the highest level for club and country.
And turning 29 in July, time is unfortunately not on his side.
As Saints fans, we need to look at this situation in a positive way.
We’ve got a top striker in his prime, with a clear aim for the remainder of the season: get into Gareth Southgate’s England squad.
And to do so, he needs to score goals.
Yes, that is the Mason Greenwood who has scored two league goals this season.
Danny’s strike against Burnley was his 10th of the campaign.
Certainly fewer than he, and we, hoped he’d have at this stage of the season.
On our international break pod, we said he’d probably need six or seven more in the final nine games to make Gareth think twice about leaving him out.
It’s definitely an uphill battle, especially if Calvert-Lewin continues to score for Everton.
But Ings was scoring goals for England as recently as the end of 2020, so Gareth clearly rates him.
It’s not impossible.
Anyway, as the legend Nigel Adkins used to say, “control the controllables”.
Let the paper’s talk. Let the speculation unfold.
All we can do is enjoy the football. All Danny can do is score goals.
And with a cup semi final on the horizon, and a hungry Ings up top, there’s reason to be optimistic.
Up the Saints.