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TALKING POINTS: Koeman's pre-Leicester City press conference

Ronald Koeman speaks to the media

Image by: Matt Watson/Southampton FC

PUBLISHED

22:30 6th November 2014

by Tom Biggs

Saints boss Ronald Koeman spoke to the media ahead of the Barclays Premier League game against Leicester City on Saturday at St Mary's.

Here is what the manager had to say to the media:

On the launch of the Markus Liebherr Pavilion…

It’s the best centre I have worked at. There is everything important for the Academy of the club because Southampton is famous for the young players and give them great facilities to develop themselves. For the first team as well, it is to enjoy the training sessions every day. If you don’t enjoy with these facilities, you will never enjoy.

On a busy schedule in December for Saints…

We know our schedule for the month of December and the end of November. We will have a tough week in the beginning of December but we will look forward to that because that gives us the possibilities to play well and see what we can do against the big ones.

On a sold-out St Mary’s for the game against Leicester City…

I think of course it depends always how the first-team is doing and we know that we are a strong team at home until now. The fans love how we play football.

That’s a good understanding between the fans and the players and we have to keep it like this. We are happy we are sold out for this weekend because that means a lot to the players and we like to bring three points to our fans on Saturday.

On a host of international call-ups for Saints…

We are proud to have a lot of international football players because that means a lot to the club. Of course it is a tough week for them but they learn a lot about international football and I am very proud of the players. Last time we had 17 calls for our players and that is fantastic. You always expect the players back in good physical shape but that’s not up to me, we have to hope about that.

On whether the situation for Saints is new for some of his players…

Maybe for some players it is a new situation. If you play for Southampton you didn’t play in the Champions League, for the title in the league or for European Cup football.

It is a new situation and a new situation brings different details to the team, but the position of the table isn’t the most important. It is nice to see that you are winning and it is nice for the fans but we have to deal with that.

Saturday maybe is an examination to show that still we keep that ambition and still we have to work hard to win games and that will be nice for this Saturday.

On Dušan Tadić’s performances and attitude…

I was impressed in Holland about his qualities. I was impressed by his qualities because he scored goals and did a lot of assists. If you like football, you come to the stadium to see those kind of players.

He’s a nice guy, he’s friendly, he knows what he has to do to reach that high level. He’s working a lot outside of the pitch on the fitness to have a good physical shape and to prepare for the game on Saturday. That’s Tadić but I can say anything else about the rest of the players.

On Leicester being a hard team to break down…

Leicester will come to have a good organisation on the pitch, to close the line and not leave a lot of space for us to play. We are talking that when we have the ball we need good possession and good positions on the pitch to play at a high tempo.

We know that and in all the training sessions that is what we are doing normally. It’s all about possession and okay, the physical part is an important part of football, but I believe in the way of playing and that makes the difference between teams.

On Victor Wanyama and the other midfielders…

We do a lot of finishing and not only finishing with the attackers or the forward, but with the defenders and with the midfield players. I gave the midfield players a lot of freedom.

I like to have a good rotation between them in the midfield and they have to score. The more players who can score the more difficult it is for the opponent to have a good defence.

That is maybe the difference between last season, that Morgan [Schneiderlin], Victor and Jack Cork are scoring more goals than in the past. It’s a new quality they bring and it’s a good quality.

Victor scored in the 1-0 away win against Swansea and he scored in the 1-0 against Hull City and that makes six points.

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