The Carabao Cup second-round draw will be made following Salford City’s clash against Leeds United this evening, and Southampton have been allocated ball number seven of the southern section.
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Mark Hughes was in charge of the club’s short-lived campaign last term. A 1-0 win away at Brighton and Hove Albion was followed up by penalty shootout victory against Everton after a 1-1 draw.
However, Southampton crashed out in the round of 16, as their 0-0 stalemate away at Leicester City this time led them to defeat in another penalty shootout.
So, this time around, should we be taking the cup a little more seriously, and mounting a genuine pursuit for silverware?
Saints could be keen to advance in the domestic competitions this season, with Ralph Hasenhuttl looking to lead them well away from the threat and distraction of a relegation battle in the Premier League.
Ultimately, it will be easier to turn our attention towards pushing on in the cups if our position in the top flight is in no immediate danger, and it would be a positive step to make this campaign a memorable one because of an exciting run against all odds.
Southampton’s primary focus should be on ensuring that a strong Premier League finish is achieved – that much is certain. However, fans remember the EFL Cup final against Manchester United at Wembley over two years ago to this day, even though the outcome was not as hoped.
Despite the 3-0 defeat against Burnley on Saturday, opening the top-flight campaign in the worst possible manner, we shouldn’t be under the threat of relegation this season, and there is no reason why Hasenhuttl can’t lead us to safety given his qualities as a manager.
Therefore, neglecting the chance to succeed in cup competitions such as this one would be somewhat frustrating, and Saints should certainly do what they can to secure a long-overdue piece of silverware.