A number of Southampton fans have taken to Twitter to implore Ralph Hasenhuttl to reinstate Alex McCarthy as the club’s first-choice goalkeeper after his display against Manchester City on Tuesday.
The Saints were handed the toughest task possible as they looked to bounce back from Friday’s defeat against Leicester City. And the fans may have feared the worst the Cityzens took a 2-0 lead inside 38 minutes.
However, Hasenhuttl’s men were much better in the second-half of their Carabao Cup tie. They lost 3-1, but it appears that many of the supporters were happy enough with what they saw.
McCarthy was one of the players to come in for the trip to the Etihad Stadium. It was always likely that he would play the cup game. But he would have been forgiven for feeling that he had an opportunity with Angus Gunn picking the ball out of his net nine times on Friday.
And judging by the fan reaction to his display, McCarthy certainly took his chance. He made good saves from the likes of Riyad Mahrez and Angelino during the first-half. And he could have done little about the three goals, which all came from in and around the six-yard box.
It would be unfair to place too much blame on Gunn for Leicester’s win. He certainly could have done better, but he also produced some good stops.
Nevertheless, plenty of Southampton fans on social media have insisted that Hasenhuttl has to go with McCarthy in the league moving forward.
The 29-year-old was a revelation for much of his previous stint as first-choice. And with Gunn struggling to win his doubters over in recent months, Hasenhuttl would arguably be asking for trouble if he decided to swap them back when Saints return to Manchester City this weekend.
Here is what some of the supporters made of McCarthy’s performance…
Not a terrible result. It’s very clear now that McCarthy is much better than Gunn and that Danso is actually decent in his natural role.
— SH (@swhftbl) October 29, 2019
Gunn v Burnl: 1 save. 3 goals against
B’mouth: 0 saves. 3 goals against
Spurs: 2 saves. 2 goals against
Chels: 3 saves. 4 goals against
Wolves: 0 saves. 1 goal against
Lei’er: 6 saves. 9 goals against
McCarthy v City: 6 saves. 3 goals against
I know who gets my vote #saintsfc
— Ryan Rodwell (@ryan_rodwell) October 29, 2019
@solentsport Alex McCarthy showed tonight why he is number one. Should keep Gunn on the bench for a while.
— Jay (@ffsJxy) October 29, 2019
Whenever McCarthy plays I am even more baffled as to how he was ever dropped for Gunn? #saintsfc
— Andy Davis (@andydavis1978) October 29, 2019
Stephens, Danso & McCarthy deserve to start on Saturday after that performance! Positive end to the game and effective set pieces will be the way to get at City on Saturday. Redmond and Adams up top may work going forward into the season #SaintsFC
— Dan West (@danieljwest93) October 29, 2019
play McCarthy in goal over Gunn and we only concede 3 away to the reigning champions? imagine my shock https://t.co/Jwv6Af7k2E
— tom (@jozzerboy_) October 29, 2019
Positives: McCarthy in goal (who knew?), Danso at centre back (who knew?). Also thought Valery had a decent game #saintsfc
— Glen de la Cour (leagueoneminus10) (@L1minus10) October 29, 2019
Positives? McCarthy had a good game, considerably better than Gunn in recent times. We looked to play with more intensity once Redmond and Che came on, scored and Vokins got his senior competitive debut.
— Jack (@HasenhuttIin) October 29, 2019
McCarthy needs to stay in goal for the remainder of the season now.
Build on that final 10 minutes where we actually started to play.
HAVE to go into every game thinking we can get something. Anything else and we get torn apart. #SaintsFC
— Jordan Stevens (@JordanStevens92) October 29, 2019
Gunn should never be played ahead of McCarthy. I’ve said it before n I’m saying it again.
— char (@charseymour8) October 29, 2019