Koeman: We can take confidence from cup win

By SFC Media time Mon 01 Dec First team

Saints boss Ronald Koeman says his players will be able to take confidence from their previous visit to the Emirates Stadium when they take on Arsenal.

Saints progressed in the Capital One Cup earlier in the season thanks to goals from Dušan Tadić and Nathaniel Clyne after Alexis Sanchez had opened the scoring, and head back there on Wednesday night in the Premier League.

But Koeman has warned of a rejuvenated Arsenal side who have picked up wins against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League and West Brom in the Premier League in the last week.

Having seen his side suffer defeat to Manchester City on Sunday, the manager is pleased that another game is coming so quickly to allow his players to respond immediately.

Speaking to Southampton’s official YouTube channel, Koeman said: “[The previous result] gives the confidence that we can beat them, but Arsenal in the last two games have had two good results.

“I think they are a little bit back with the spirit about these two results. It will be difficult, but you always get space against Arsenal. They like to play, they like to play offensive.

“Okay, I think it will be an open game and with our possibilities we believe we will have chances for a good result.

“The best is playing the next one as fast as possible because that can bring a new feeling to the team, to the players. That’s important. It will be a different game, a different opponent, a different style of play. We have to prepare for that.”

Despite Sunday’s defeat, Koeman was quick to reinforce his confidence in his players, as well as striker Graziano Pellè who has found the going tougher in recent weeks.

The striker is currently on nine goals for the campaign, but hasn’t scored since the Capital One Cup win against Stoke City. However Koeman believes when the chances come back around, he’ll be ready to add to his tally.

“I believe in the players, one result doesn’t make a difference,” Koeman added. “We’re still happy with our performances until now, we know we can lose against City because they have a strong squad, a strong team.

“Now we have to go on, it’s no time to be disappointed any more because we have to play Wednesday. Tomorrow is a new day, I’m sure the players will come in with a lot of spirit, which they have showed until now.

“I think he [Pellè] is doing like before, only we didn’t create a lot in the last few games. Attackers to score goals need assists from the other players. Maybe the quality is a little bit down to create opportunities.

“We have to believe in our qualities and show that. Pellè will be the scoring man again. He’s experienced, he knows what happens when he doesn’t score, you have to be relaxed, work hard, and then you can change that.”

Morgan Schneiderlin came off at half-time in the defeat to Manchester City and Koeman says the midfielder will miss Wednesday night’s game. But he had positive news where another midfielder was concerned.

“Morgan is at the hospital today and we will wait for that, but he will not play this Wednesday. Jack Cork is back in training, he was ill but will be in good physical shape for Wednesday,” he concluded.

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