Kyle Walker-Peters believes Southampton should be aiming to break into the top half of the Premier League table this season.
The 23-year-old praised the way the team finished last season, with five wins and just one loss in the nine games in Project Restart, and is bullish about the team’s potential for next season.
“I don’t see why we shouldn’t be looking to get into the top 10. We finished 11th, we just got above Everton,” he told talkSPORT.
“We weren’t too far off Europe. We don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves but I think it’s a realistic target.”
Walker-Peters joined Saints on loan in January, playing 10 times for Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men before making the move permanent from Tottenham Hotspur over the summer.
Walker-Peters relishing opportunities
The right-back started each of the final seven games of the season as he overtook Yan Valery in the pecking order, an opportunity he relished in fresh surroundings.
“At Tottenham I always found it hard to even get a run of games and now I felt after lockdown I was given that opportunity from Ralph,” he said.
“With a run of games you get confidence and you get your fitness, which is important. Now I am just looking to kick on again.”
In Walker-Peters and Valery, Southampton have two very young and talented right-backs and the former Spurs man knows his place “isn’t solidified” and is eager to “keep showing what I’m capable of”.
Hasenhuttl: He can develop even more here.
Hasenhuttl told the official club website in August that he was “very pleased” to bring Walker-Peters back on a permanent basis, hailing him as a “very good fit for our style” after a difficult induction at St. Mary’s Stadium.
Walker-Peters praised the manager’s impact on him so far, highlighting the clear message from the boss on what was expected of him.
He is confident that a “really tough” pre-season schedule will set the team up for success in what looms as a busy season for football clubs across Europe and the world.
Southampton’s Premier League campaign kicks off at Selhurst Park with a clash against Crystal Palace on Saturday September 12.