Hasenhuttl pleased with Southampton’s defensive improvements


Southampton coach Ralph Hasenhuttl is confident his side is improving at the back as they look to climb the Premier League table.

The Saints are now unbeaten in their last three league games, a run of results that has lifted them into 10th in the league table.

Hasenhuttl’s side went into the international break in high spirits after beating Brighton and drawing with Manchester United.

Southampton also beat Fulham to progress into the next round of the Carabao Cup and things are now looking up for the south coast outfit.

They proved their form is no fluke after beating Sheffield United 1-0 on Saturday afternoon at Bramall Lane.

Summer signing Moussa Djenepo scored the deciding goal after gliding his way through the Blades defence in the second half.

Southampton have now recorded three successive away victories without conceding a goal in all competitions for the first time since 1986.

Despite seeing the Blades waste several opportunities, Hasenhuttl believes his team have started to improve at the back, and he is looking forward with plenty of optimism.

He told reporters: “It’s important. I think that was the biggest problem last season. This season it’s not the case that we don’t give them any chances, they still have chances because it’s very difficult in the Premier League to not give them a chance.

“Also, the goalkeepers Angus and Alex (McCarthy) make a good development this season, and the back five were very concentrated. It is good to see things develop that you have been working on. This can hopefully continue.

“Finally, you need a bit of luck also, but luck you have to work for, and I think in the moment it was a deserved win for us because we worked hard and we believe in what we’re doing.”

Southampton’s defence will come under pressure against high-scoring Bournemouth next week, while they are also preparing to play Tottenham, Chelsea and Wolves in their coming fixtures.