Koeman: Saints showed character to see off Hammers

By SFC Media time Sat 30 Aug First team

Saints boss Ronald Koeman hailed his players’ spirit after this afternoon’s away win over West Ham.

Having fallen behind to Mark Noble’s 27th-minute opener, Southampton hit back to as Morgan Schneiderlin levelled on the stroke of half-time.

The Frenchman added a second after the break before Graziano Pellè wrapped up Saints’ first league win of the campaign – much to the delight of their manager.

“After the first two results in the Premier League, we needed points – and we got the points today,” Koeman told youtube.com/southamptonfc

“We had good character. After the equaliser, we had the belief and the spirit to play for the win.

“The big difference between West Ham and our team was that we had the spirit to press, to play and to score goals.

“We made the difference between them and us, because I think we are a much better team than West Ham.

“With these three points, I think the start of the season is okay. We’d like to continue that.”

Koeman must now wait a fortnight for his side’s next game, with a number of players immediately heading off on international duty after today’s match.

And the Saints boss says it was vital to go into the two-week break on the back of a victory: “It’s always important to win before the international break.

“Everybody is now flying out and we hope they return in good physical shape and then we can continue what we’ve done up until now.”

The manager’s efforts may well turn to the transfer market over the coming 48 hours and, with the summer window set to close at 11pm on Monday, Koeman hinted that he will do some last-minute business.

“There’s no clear news, but there are still two days and there will come some movements in terms of players in and players out.

“I think that’s not only the case for Southampton but all teams. Something always happens in the last two days.”

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