Pellegrino happy with much-needed improved performance following Southampton triumph over Everton

Pellegrino happy with much-needed improved performance following Southampton triumph over Everton

Mauricio Pellegrino was hoping his Saints team would put their past failures at home behind them and so they did with Charlie Austin's double helping the side to an emphatic victory.

Ryan White

Southampton have safely drifted themselves away from the relegation zone, for now, following a satisfying three points picked up on Sunday against a downbeat Everton under the guidance of interim manager David Unsworth

Dušan Tadić opened the scoring inside the first twenty minutes but a Gylfi Sigurðsson equaliser moments before the break meant the teams were levelled going into the interval. 

Saints boss Mauricio Pellegrino must have grinded into his squad at half-time as an improved 45 minutes of football followed and two goals from forward Charlie Austin and a late finish courtesy of Steven Davis was enough to see off the Toffees. 

That win for Southampton has lifted the club into the Premier League top-half as they lie tenth on 16 points - allowing themselves a relieving breathing space from the drop. Pellegrino has reflected on the eventful outing and has praised the efforts of his players to rack up the victory. 

“I didn’t do any special things, just keep believing''

In the seek for an eagerly needed triumph, the manager was in desperate need of changing his line-up in the search for goals and did just that with the introduction of Charlie Austin to the starting eleven; paying off with the striker's second-half double. 

Pellegrino was also forced to switch his midfield with the absence of the injured Mario Lemina and suspended Oriol Romeu, meaning Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, who beforehand had played just six minutes of league action this term, was named in the team sheet. 

However, the boss stated he was not desperate to change his approach in order to get the win at full-time, ''Just keep believing, keeping going and we created a lot of chances like a lot of games at home when I think we deserved a lot of points.''

Also, looking back at previous games this season, Mauricio Pellegrino accepts there will be weeks where his team don't find the back of the net; “But sometimes is like this, you can score four goals like today, and sometimes like against Huddersfield not, but this is part of football.”

“I think after scoring the third one it was easy for us''

The weekend's hosts have often found themselves the dominant side at St. Mary's this season but have consistently struggled to convert their chances, although this wasn't the case for Sunday's visit of Everton. 

Southampton ended the game with 67% possession, 17 shots at goal and five ended on target - four of those rippling the net. 

Despite not scoring a goal since February at both club and international level, Mauricio Pellegrino is full of positive feedback for 80th minute substitute Shane Long; ''the space from Shane and we create a lot of chances.''

Finishing his pre-match comments, the manager knows the struggles the club has had to go through in the last decade, including having to play in in the third-tier of English Football, but is happy the dedicated supporters are being awarded, “Always from beginning I felt people got behind us and I have to be really pleased with our fans. Southampton was born from a difficult moment not too many years ago.

“The people know and the people are supporting our team and this victory is also for them.”

The Saints end November with a trip to league leaders Manchester City before a hectic December which involves seven top-flight outings, their opposition next month includes Arsenal at St. Mary's and away matches to Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and Chelsea.