Southampton travel to face a free-scoring Manchester City in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.
Southampton enter this game in disarray and with Ralph Hasenhuttl’s job hanging in the balance.
The Austrian has presided over three consecutive defeats, leaving his side in 16th place, just one point above the relegation zone.
City have such a depth of talent that it simply takes a tactical masterclass to grind out any kind of result.
Southampton’s first step should be to find a way to silence the unstoppable Erling Haaland, who has scored 19 goals in his first 11 games.
Mohammed Salisu has been recalled and is starting the match after missing their disappointing defeat to Everton.
The dominant centre-back is one of the few players who may be able to withstand the physical demands of the Norwegian machine.
Standing at 6 feet 3, his presence should be enough to deter Haaland.
With his defensive stats this season being nothing short of spectacular, he might have a chance.
The Ghana international ranks in the top 5% of tacklers, 3% of clearances, and 17% of aerials won.
He has been crucial for a Saints team that has disappointed this season, and they would be far worse off without him.
Salisu also has decent speed for a man his size, and if he can maintain his concentration throughout the entire game, there is no reason why he cannot silence the seemingly unstoppable sensation.
Journalist Adam Blackmore described him as “defensively solid” after his first Premier League start. He has only gotten better since that 2021 statement, and he is now facing arguably the most difficult challenge of his career.