Please give a warm welcome to OWTS’ newest contributor, Ben Thompson.
Ben is a Saints fan who is currently studying at the University of Edinburgh.
He’ll be popping up with Saints-related pieces in our newsletters and you may even hear him on the podcast in the near future.
Ben’s first contribution is below - a look at Fraser Forster vs Alex McCarthy in the battle for our No.1 jersey.
Fraser or Alex? It’s not a question I was expecting to ask myself back in November, (cue ‘Stop the Count!’ T-shirts and tweets) but here we are.
After such a dismal run of form the prospect of two established first-team goalkeepers inevitably raises questions about the no.1 spot. Forster provided material for fans and critics alike at the weekend, looking flat-footed in his attempt to deny Lewis Dunk’s opener before brilliantly saving from Pascal Gross. With the team conceding much fewer goals per game with Forster in net, (0.75 to McCarthy’s 1.92 this season) should Ralph stick with him now until the end of the season?
McCarthy proved at the start of the season he’s got what it takes to be part of this team, but his confidence was knocked by a run of conceding so many goals in such a short period of time.
For me, the biggest difference in their game is collecting crosses, where McCarthy impresses and Forster sometimes lacks, especially for someone who makes Jannik Vestergaard look normal size.
A stellar season for Forster last season at Celtic shows he still has the experience to be a consistent goalkeeper given enough game time, and perhaps that’s what we need in a time like this.
It’s not an easy decision but considering the way things are going, it could prove to be a pivotal one in the fight for…a decent league position. Yes, I’m stubbornly refusing to mention a certain 10 letter ‘r’ word at this moment.
Are you happy to continue with Forster or should we go back to McCarthy?
Hit reply and let Ben know.