Pierre-Emile Højbjerg praised Southampton’s 'DNA' after his solitary strike earned a precious 1-0 victory over Brighton & Hove Albion in the Premier League.
The goal from Saints' skipper in the 53rd minute proved the difference, after he was played in by Nathan Redmond before lifting the ball over the onrushing Mathew Ryan.
Saints then stood firm to preserve their clean sheet and make it back-to-back Premier League victories, moving level on points with their hosts.
“You look at the table and you can see it’s a big step. Points wise it’s a big step. Also mentally and spirit wise,” Højbjerg said.
“I think we played a solid first-half. Technically our play could be better and sometimes our passing quality could be better but it helps when you’re fighting like this and building a DNA and spirit around the team, with the fans and the club. Most importantly, the players and the coach are coming together and forming a strong DNA.
“It’s what you see on the pitch. Even in the difficult times we stand together to get these wins and that’s a joy. It’s a joy to come to training, to have these matchdays because people are on it here.
“The best example is the people coming in as substitutes and giving it all. That’s what it is about, you’re as good as the last player in the squad.
"That’s what we’re showing at the moment. Everybody is competing and everyone is staying sharp.
“It is what we can expect but also something we can take a lot of credit out of because, again, it’s a joy to be around the team at the moment.”