Glantz, Armageddon in Stalingrade, p. 84 ff.:
The Stavka's concerns became a reality on 10 September when XXXXVIII Panzer Corps' 29th Motorized Division finally broke through to the Volga River at Kuporosnoe [south of Stalingrad]…. Overnight on 10-11 September.. Hoth's and Kempf's ardor cooled a bit:
the [29th's] battalion [at Kuporosnoe] lost the half mile adjacent to the river… when it was overrun by furious charges….
elements of 131st Rifle and 35th Guards Rifle Divisions…. Encouraged by Sixth Army's and XXXXVIII Panzer Corps' progress… Weichs late on 10th September ordered Fourth Panzer Army to reorganize its forces nd mount an advance northeastward directly into the southern half of Stalingrad city…. seize the city "piece by piece"…. Paulus and Hoth made final adjustments to their forces before commending their final assault on the city.>As Paulus was completing Group Stahel's relief of 389th Infantry Division, on 10th and 11th September Hoth shifted IV Army Corps's 94th Infantry division northward… to provide infantry support for XXXXVIII Panzer Corps' thrust into Stalingrad city. The 94th… relieved 245h Panzer Division late on 11 September…. [B]y this time the [24th Panzer Division] reported its combat strength was 8,714 men, as compared with its ration strength of 15,401 men, and it had only 14 operable tanks….
By this time, all of [Russian] 62nd and 64th Armies' formations and units had suffered severe attrition, which reduced the two armies' total strength from about 104,000 men and 200-250 tanks on 3 September to about 90,000 mean and 120 tanks on 12 September…. 35th Guards and 131st, 315th, 112th, and 399th Rifle Divisons numbered 202-5 percent of their authorized strength of 10,386 men and far fewer bayonets, and 87th, 98th, and 196th Rifle Divisions fielded about 800, 300, and 400 bayonets…. Clearly, if Southeastern Front was to mount an effective dense of the city, additional reinforcements were required….
[B]ecause the Germans appeared preoccupied with capturing Stalin's namesake city, Zhukov, Eremenko, and the Stavka were convinced that Hitler would employ whatever forces were required to do so, den at the expense of seriously weakening other sectors of the front. To ensure that 62nd and 64th Armies functioned as meat grinders--chewing up attacking German forces without losing the city--Stalin appointed tough men like Chuikov and Shumilov to command 62nd and 64th Armies. He also reinforced their armies with just enough forces to guarantee they could perform this task without detracting from the assembly and concentration of reeves necessary to conduct counteroffensives….
62nd and 64th Armies' stout resistance along the approaches to Stalingrad indicated that the strength of Weichs's assault group attacking the city was inadequate for the task. Instead of seizing the city form the march as Weichs, Paulus, and Hoth had hoped the advance by their shock groups had degenerated by mid-September into a grinding and costly struggle for terrain, measured in hundreds of meters per day. If this advance was to continue, additional troops clearly were required.
Despite this positive appreciation of the [Russian] fight at Kotluban' and on the approach to Stalingrad, one Russian historian offers a far more somber and caustic assessment:
Summarizing the results of the first stage of the battle for Stalingrad, one can say with confidence that the Soviet military leadership performed in undistinguished fashion Paulus and Hoth, who had at their disposal 18 German and 4 Romanian divisions, including 3 panzer and 3 motorized divisions, conducted a successful offensive for two months…. Gordov, Eremenko, Vasilevsky, and Zhukov were able to commit more than 60 rife divisions, 8 tank corps, 12 separate tank brigades, and several separate tank battalions with about 2500 tanks into combat in the Stalingrad region…. And now the enemy stood at the banks of the Volga River and, adorned with numerous stars and kilograms of medals, the military chiefs are telling us tales about the [Nazi] enemy's four- to six-fold superiority and how the "Soviet military leadership learned much in the difficult school of modern war during the fierce battles on the approaches to Stalingrad".
On the one hand, Comrade Stalin could sympathize with them. On the other--he himself had trained this cadre.
If the Red Army's senior command cadre in the Stalingrad region hoped to prevail in the subsequent fighting, this meant that they would have to perform far better than they had during July, August, and early September. Only time would tell whether they succeeded or not.