Pellegrino: ''I believe in the character of my team''

Pellegrino: ''I believe in the character of my team''

Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino has rallied his team ahead of the club's scrap to avoid a relegation battle.

Ryan White

Ahead of the club's crucial Premier League fixture on the road at Burnley this weekend, Southampton manager Mauricio Pellegrino has called on his players to rise above the challenge of a relegation scrap come the end of the season, with the team currently lying inside the bottom three. 

The month of February has been a fairly mixed one for the Saints having overcome bottom-of-the-table West Bromwich Albion in the league and FA Cup, however, those are the only victories to the side's name since the turn of the year, alongside triumphs over Fulham and Watford also in the cup. 

Saturday's opposition, albeit sit 7th in the league, but have not tasted a top-flight victory since December, and Pellegrino will be eager to use his opposition's lack of confidence to his advantage; "If we use Burnley as an example, they are in the middle of the table, but they could not win for the past 10 games."

The boss has also admitted, however, that any game in the first division is an enduring task and that supporters should never expect an easy three points, "Facing every single team is difficult because the Premier League is very tough.''

"Every single victory helps us''

Southampton have lost just one of their last five Premier League outing, although three have been stalemates, but Mauricio Pellegrino thinks even the slightest of wins can go a whole way to improving the team's ambition and willingness for the next fixture; "Every single victory helps us to believe in our way and our model. This, for me, is the best drug for this team."

The Argentinian has also recognised the importance of the upcoming games for his Saints side who face four successive away games after next week's home outing against Stoke City, meaning it's critical for the club to get something out of their next two matches; ''We have a lot of away games and have to be really stronger than before.''



Can the Saints afflict more damage into the Clarets' woeful 2018?

If Southampton are to ensure St. Mary's hosts another campaign of Premier League football then the need to rack up every singe set of three points is alarmingly high. 

Burnley, the team's opponents this weekend, have endured a torrid 2018 so far and that is certainly how the Saints can see themselves claiming the win in the north-west on Saturday, despite Turf Moor being recognised as a tense fortress for the Clarets this season. 

The injury list is growing and you feel Southampton are slowly, but surely, hitting their stride and a shock may be on the cards in the top-flight, as long as Mauricio Pellegrino sticks to his game plan and uses Burnley's weaknesses to his and the team's advantage.