Southampton character shining through in superb week

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Three away wins in a week for Southampton has shown that that the players and staff carry the necessary mental attributes for a Champions League battle.

Ronald Koeman led his side to victory against Manchester United, Ipswich Town and then Newcastle last night.

The long distance travelled and injury problems could have caused them to crumble but instead they came through with flying colours which will have done wonders for their already flowing confidence.

Squad determination

The Dutch manager has done well to engage his entire squad throughout the season and they are all pulling in the same direction.

It would have been easy for some to seem uninterested in the challenge with not much playing time but those named and used as substitutes are always chomping at the bit when they are finally given a chance.

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With injuries to Morgan Schneiderlin, Victor Wanyama and Toby Alderweireld this week, Koeman kept faith with Harrison Reed in midfield and Florin Gardos at the back and both did a superb job against Newcastle last night.

Character defining performances

That has seen the squad's character tested to it's limits and they have passed with flying colours.

At times in all three matches they came under some pressure, more so against both United's and it would have been easy for them to cave in.

They didn't however and stood strong in the face of all that was thrown at them, refusing to give up on the challenge set for them by Koeman.

It is clear to see how much confidence they have been given by their manager and they have also bought into his philosophy to win playing the right way.

Lead from the back

Part of the praise should also be given to Saints skipper Fonte who has led superbly in all three games this week.

His rise alongside the club has seen him become captain this year and his displays have mirrored the stature of the position.

At times his performances have appeared effortless and his on-field presence is an inspiration to his teammates. 

These three wins can now be a catalyst for the rest of the season and in times of struggle they can remember the challenge they overcame this week and use it to motivate them further towards the big time.

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Premier League
Jose Fonte
Ronaldo Koeman

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