Maya Yoshida urges Southampton team-mates to maintain full concentration in future games
Yoshida in action during the Premier League match against West Bromwich Albion

Maya Yoshida urges Southampton team-mates to maintain full concentration in future games

Yoshida clarifies Saints' weaknesses that need to change ahead of this week's matches.

Jess Cowie

Southampton centre-back Maya Yoshida says he and his teammates must learn to maintain full concentration all the way up until to the final whistle in matches.

His comments come after they conceded a last-gasp effort against Norwich City in the FA Cup third round to draw 2-2 at Carrow Road.

Last minute headache

The Japanese international scored his sixth goal of his Saints career to give them a 2-1 lead on the stroke of 67 minutes.

However, a 92nd-minute Steven Naismith strike set up an undesired replay at St Mary’s next Wednesday.

In an interview reflecting on the result, Yoshida said: "We’re totally disappointed.

"We shouldn’t have conceded in the last minute because we controlled the game well, and maybe the first goal shouldn’t have happened for Harry (Lewis) in his debut game,” he added.

Saints grabbed the early lead with a Virgil van Dijk opener but the defender's effort was cancelled out when Norwich's Steven Whittaker converted a penalty early on in the second half.

"We shouldn’t have conceded that second goal," continued Yoshida.

Added pressure that could have been avoided

The same thing happened against West Brom lamented Yoshida, where he said the Saints took “control of the game” before “conceded two goals” which were “very unacceptable" as they threw away three points.

This time around they neither won nor lost, but will have to take part in a replay to add to an already-busy month of January - something Yoshia eluded to when he said there “are also important things” the club has to focus on before they take on Norwich a second time.

He noted that their the next game is against “Liverpool” , a massive first leg of their two-legged League Cup “semi-final” , before acknowledging their return to Premier League action against Burnley.

The 28-year-old defender firmly believes that the squad need to keep their “concentration until the end” if they are to avoid throwing away points, or results, late on again.

Saints had kept 12 clean sheets in 25 games in all competitions before conceding 12 goals in just five games in their recent run of matches.