Recent arrival Filip Djuričić says he already feels right at home in Southampton as he prepares to take on Liverpool on Sunday afternoon.
The Serbian international could line up against the Reds at St Mary’s as Ronald Koeman’s side look to continue their push for a place in the top four of the Barclays Premier League.
And the Benfica loanee – who joined at the end of the January transfer window – says he’s happy in his new surroundings and is ready to knuckle down and help Saints finish in a Champions League spot this term – and possibly earn himself a longer deal.
“I think the situation is very good for the club, because they haven’t been in this position in the last ten years,” the former Heerenveen playmaker told the Southern Daily Echo.
“I think the atmosphere is really great and I think we can reach the goal that we want at the end of the season, and I think that’s enough for me. I was a little bit surprised, because I didn’t expect such a great club, and it’s a good feeling for me also.
“I like it here. I was on the field with the guys. I came and played immediately the (West Ham) game, and for me it was really nice.
“I went to the city. For me, it’s really nice and I hope I will settle in a couple of days in some house or apartment, because I am still in a hotel. But for now everything is fine – the training facilities, the guys, the team, the coach, everything – it is on the level that I expect.
“First of all, my first goal here is to help the team to reach their goal, the Champions League. After that it’s to show myself here and, of course, it’s my goal to stay here next year if it’s possible.”
Djuričić, who made his name at Heerenveen before heading to Portugal to join Koeman’s old club Benfica in 2013, spent a short, unhappy stint with Mainz in Germany during the early part of this campaign.
But, fresh from his Bundesliga disappointment, he is determined to make his presence felt in English football, and hailed the influence of his new manager in persuading him to make the move to England.
And the Obrenovac-born 23 year-old also told of the part that Dušan Tadić – his friend and international teammate – has had in helping his acclimatise, both professionally and personally, to life on the south coast.
“I know his (Koeman’s) team, I know his work from Holland. I was there four years and he was coaching at the same time and I like the team that he trained at that moment, and for me I can say it was the most important thing,” said Djuričić.
“I spoke with him (Tadić) also before I came here and he told me only nice things, not only about the club, but also about the city and about training facilities and so on. Dušan also gave me some advice about football here and after that I decided to come.
“It’s really good to have a guy like Dušan here, because in my last three clubs where I have been I didn’t have so much Serbian guys, so I didn’t have that relationship with the players. But here I am seven days in and I already feel better than I felt in the last two clubs, so it’s very nice.”