Mauricio Pochettino has urged Saints to quickly forget about Sunday’s defeat to Tottenham Hotspur and instead focus on the prospect of two away games in four days.
That 3-2 defeat at St Mary’s made it six games without a win for Southampton, who now travel to Cardiff City on Boxing Day then onto Everton three days later.
And manager Pochettino says the players must swiftly divert their attention onto the prospect of getting back to winning ways over Christmas.
“When you lose, you are always very angry about that so it’s very important for us to quickly be able to go into two games so we can look to find our winning streak once again,” Mauricio told Saints Player.
“We have to forget about that loss as quickly as possible and to focus 100% on getting a win against Cardiff. We need to be ready and mentally prepared for these two games.
“We have to think about what we’re doing and how we can improve. In the first 15-to-20 minutes of the Spurs game, we played really well and could’ve gone on to win but we ended up losing.
“That’s regrettable so we need to make sure we work to make sure that doesn’t happen again.”
Pochettino was without seven players at the weekend, as Saints’ injury list was extended with Luke Shaw and Dani Osvaldo ruled out.
The manager was coy when asked whether the duo would return at the Cardiff City Stadium on Thursday, but did confirm that Nathaniel Clyne and Kelvin Davis are approaching full fitness.
“Luke Shaw had a throat infection that rendered him unavailable for the game against Tottenham, and Dani Osvaldo took a knock to his right leg that ruled him out of the game,” Pochettino explained.
“We hope that they come back as soon as possible, but we’re not sure whether they’ll be able to take part in our next two games.
“We need to assess how Clyney and Kelvin are doing,” he added. “They’re progressing well, but we need to analyse exactly when they are able to come back.
“Artur [Boruc] is still continuing his recovery, as are [Victor] Wanyama and Guly [do Prado]. There are quite a few open cases we’re assessing.”
Shaw’s absence on Sunday once again reignited speculation over the teenage defender’s future, despite him signing a five-year contract last July and verbally reaffirming his commitment to the Club earlier this season.
And Pochettino was forthright when questioned as to the Club’s view on such rumours: “It’s pretty clear what the situation is with Luke Shaw,” he said.
“The player himself has said that he doesn’t want to go anywhere. He is 18 years old and he is very happy here. All of these rumours are not positive for him or for the Club.
“The Club’s stance is that we will not negotiate and we will not sell him. He’s a very young player so he needs time to progress and improve. We are not willing to sell Luke Shaw.”
Having trained this morning, the Saints squad will return to Staplewood on Christmas Day to continue their pre-match preparations before departing for Cardiff tomorrow evening.
And Pochettino admits that he is still coming to terms with the prospect of working during the festive period, having previously enjoyed winter breaks during his time in Spain and France.
“As technical staff, it’s strange for us to be working on Christmas Day but it’s more than normal for the players because they’ve been through it many times,” he explained.
“It’s a bit of a strange time because it’s the first time that we’ve worked through the winter period because there is no break here.
“We’re trying to enjoy the Christmas period as much as we can and to do as best we can during it.”