Southampton's experienced head, Oriol Romeu, has encouraged team-mate Stuart Armstrong to be a hit on the south coast after the midfielder signed for the club at the back end of last month from Scottish outfit Celtic.
The 26-year-old joined Mark Hughes' ranks for a fee of £7 million and Romeu believes the player will undeniably flourish with the Saints during the forthcoming campaign.
Armstrong played much of the side's pre-season tour in China as a secondary striker, which goes to show what sort of influence he will play in the manager's plans this season, and Romeu has liked what he's seen in the attack-minded player.
Spaniardinard stated: “He looks very good and he’s fitted in well. Sometimes players take time to adapt but I see him playing at a good level in the Premier League.''
Having been the first name through the door at St. Mary's in this transfer window, Armstrong joins the other three fresh faces at Southampton who have never played a single minute in the top-flight as of yet - alongside goalkeeper Angus Gunn, winger Mohamed Elyounoussi and centre-half Jannik Vestergaard.
However, his midfield counterpart believes he has the capability to adapt to English football swiftly: “He’s a clever footballer and a good guy, who’s always trying to do things to improve himself.''
''He can play the last pass, he gets in the box, scores goals and assists. Hopefully, he does this many times with us."
Adding: "He can play as a number eight or in the number ten role and can get into those final areas of the pitch.''
''We might not have enough at the end''
Southampton have three more pre-season fixtures to get underway prior to the new Premier League campaign kicking off in just over a fortnight's time; a friendly against French outfit Dijon this coming Saturday and two home games against Celta Vigo and Borussia Monchengladbach next week.
Romeu, who joined Southampton in the summer of 2015 and has since signed a new deal, realises the club cannot find themselves in the same situation as last term when they nearly suffered a jaw-dropping relegation to the Championship: “Last time we found ourselves in a very vulnerable position.''
As well as that, former Spain youth international realises it's pivotal for himself and his team-mates to ensure they begin the campaign in the right manner: “If we don’t start getting points right from the beginning we might not have enough at the end.”
Hughes has undoubtedly been a breath of fresh air at the Saints with his experience proving critical to the team's survival and Romeu aims to push on over the next twelve months.
“Our coaching sessions last season weren’t very long but we’re spending more time now, we’re getting to know each other well and know what they demand from us.''
“We are pushing hard to be one step ahead of the others, to have the confidence to play our football without that added pressure of being down at the bottom.''
Despite a 3-0 pre-season defeat to Derby County last weekend, it would have been a major learning curve for Hughes and his squad as they prepare for the fast-approaching campaign.
Quotes from the Daily Echo