Ward-Prowse: Fight and desire won it for us


James Ward-Prowse hopes Southampton’s perfect week will prove to be the turning point in the club’s season.

Saints followed up wins in the FA Cup and Carabao Cup, over Crystal Palace and Man City respectively, with three vital Premier League points against Everton at Goodison Park.

Trailing to Amadou Onana’s header at the interval, the skipper led the fightback with a second-half brace to take Saints level on points with their hosts, and within one point of safety.

“It’s a massive win against a very, very tough Everton team at a tough place to come,” Ward-Prowse said.

“We’re all aware of the situation and the noise around the club, and we had to come here today and focus on ourselves.

“We gave a sloppy goal away in the first half from a defensive corner, but I think it says a lot about us as a group and how the manager’s got us all together and pulling in the same direction.

“In previous years, in previous times, I think we would’ve maybe let the game peter out and not show that type of fight and desire.

“But you can see the way the manager is and his staff are on the bench – they’re passionate, they want to play with tempo and high energy, and he’s got us all pulling in the same direction.

“It’s a really good week to turn our season around and we can rebuild from here.”

Ward-Prowse’s free-kick winner took his run of form to five goals in six matches, as he helped Saints to their first league win at Goodison Park since 1997.

“As captain and as one of the more experienced guys in the team, you do bear that responsibility and when things aren’t going well, you think about it and take it more personally,” he added.

“If I can add goals to my game, great, but the main thing is I’m trying to lead by example and help the team win as many points as possible.

“I’ve been here for quite a few years now and not had too many successes, so to come here and to get a win says a lot about us as a team. It was a hostile atmosphere here today, but everybody came through it and will benefit from the experience.”