I think I remember the game we fielded our local team, we lost 0-1 to Fulham. It makes me proud that we have so many young gifted players from the academy and financially it makes good sense.... look back at the Brian Robson era when we $punked fortunes on foreign players at the end of their careers. I believe that Southgate is striving to produce a balance of good local lads mixed with players bought in from other teams but some of the players bought in (bar Tuncay) just don't seem to show the same level of commitment shown by the Boro lads.
Regarding the coaching problem, I agree this does now seem to be an issue. I was initially disappointed with GS being handed the managers job but I did come around, he seemed to be learning quickly and showed good potential....but after a run of poor results we have to re-address the situation and yes he does now seem to be struggling. Firstly, apart from when he started at Crystal Palace, playing in central midfield, Southgate spent his career as a center back. A good qualification as a defensive coach but lacking in creativity up front..this seems to sum up our performances this season, we fall apart in the final third and desperately need more imagination. Second point worth mentioning is Southgate's manner..and one which you have hit upon yourself KH.....he doesn't really come across as an imposing manager who inspires high levels of commitment from his players. Perhaps I am wrong, but does he have the character & persona to command respect from his players, especially the senior ones when he is relatively young himself ? Perhaps the intervention of an older, more experienced manager would be beneficial, it did when Bryan Robson lost the plot and Venables kept us up in the 2000/2001 season, but to most people that would be the same as replacing GS, in the end there can only be one manager and for better or for worse we have him until Gibson deems otherwise.....start praying !