“They show they learn a lot from mistakes, they make it once but not twice and that gives make a lot of hope that we can build better performances. Every part of our game you can feel a development and if we go on in this way we have a big chance to be part of this Premier League.”
With seven points from their last three games, Southampton have pulled clear of the relegation zone, but only by three points. The next three games, against Crystal Palace, Burnley and Cardiff, are likely to characterise the remainder of the season as either a relegation battle or a surge towards mid-table.
“The reality is we are still right in that fight,” said Jack Stephens. “We need to keep working, keep improving and working hard and try and get as many points on the board as possible. There are teams around us who are winning as well and no-one will be giving up easy.”
Southampton’s players are cautious when asked about the difference between the Mark Hughes and Hasenhuttl regimes but the subtext seems to be a greater intensity and clearer game plan with the latter.
“We seem to be concentrating more with more video analysis. We’re clear on what the manager wants us to do out of possession,” said Stephens.
“The manager’s come here, has invented his game plan and how he wants us to play. We’ve taken that on board and each week we seem to be getting stronger and stronger.”