Southampton pre-season perfect, claims Jose Fonte

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Southampton defender Jose Fonte has given the thumbs up to the club's preparations during pre-season so far under new manager Ronald Koeman.

The Portuguese defender, who has been linked with a move to Cardiff City in the close season, said that he was pleased with how things had gone so far since the squad returned to training, and that in his eyes things had been 'perfect'.

Feel the benefit

"So far so good, training has been good, the players have responded well, no injuries as well so it's been perfect. You can see the guys are a little bit tired, but this part of it you need to suffer to get through it so during the season we feel the benefit." he told the club's official website.

Having been through his fair share of managers since joining Southampton from Crystal Palace in 2010, Fonte is happy that the players are getting used to the methods of the new coaching staff under Ronald Koeman, and that integration is going well.

"It's good for that, and also to bond you know the new players as well, for Dusan and Pelle, to come in and get to know the lads a bit more, it's the best thing to do when you go away.

New philosophy

"We are trying to assimilate the philosophy of the new manager which is quite similar to the last one so so far everything is okay." he added.

The 6ft 2in defender also confirmed that he hoped to learn from his new boss, especially with such a legend as Koeman, who had done well as both a player and manager.

Fonte admitted he would welcome the addition of new faces to the squad, especially after the departures of such key figures as Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert and Luke Shaw this summer.

Mix it up

"It's important to have new players to keep us on our toes, to mix it up a bit, so we have two, hopefully more will come because we need them so we look forward to meeting them," he concluded.

The former Crystal Palace player also paid homage to the atmosphere in the squad, adding that losing three key players was not as hard to suffer due to the morale of the group that remains.

"We still have great team spirit. Guys like him (Kelvin Davis), that's what makes this club you know, we are a great group, I know we've lost three important players but I'm sure that the new ones will come in and they will make us stronger, and we will make them strong as well." added Fonte.

Team spirit

With boss Koeman likely to add to the squad before the season starts, Fonte will be hoping to use the great team spirit on the South Coast to integrate any new players as soon as possible ahead of what he must hope will be a successful season.

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Jose Fonte
Premier League

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