U18 PREVIEW: Jones confident ahead of Chelsea game

By SFC Media Thu 27 Nov U 18

Saints Under-18s defender Alfie Jones believes the team can take confidence from their narrow defeat to Chelsea on the opening day of the season when they meet again on Friday.

On that occasion, Saints led 3-2 midway through the second half, but two late goals from Chelsea turned the game in their favour as they won 4-3.

Since then Chelsea have maintained that winning form and head into Friday’s game at Staplewood top of the Barclays Under-18 Premier League table.

Jones, speaking to youtube.com/southamptonfc ahead of Friday’s game, believes a lot of heart can be taken from the performance earlier this season, adding that Saints must be at their best defensively. 

He said: “Chelsea is always a tough game, we should have beat them before, we were on top. I think we have the confidence to go out against anyone and beat them.

“Scoring three goals at Chelsea, not many teams do that, so I think that’s a positive for us. We’ll try to keep the goals out and score them as well.

“I think the defence has been doing really well, especially in the five games unbeaten. We’ve been working on it in training and we’re getting the best out of it, now we’ve got to score the goals.

“We had a great run of form, five games unbeaten. I think we were unlucky to lose 2-1 against Spurs but we’ve come back in and we’ll come back stronger.

“I’m sure we’re going to have a good response. We’ll go out against Chelsea full of confidence and try to get the win.”

The game against Spurs on Saturday marked a return to action for Jones, who had missed the previous five games through injury, and he was pleased to be back involved.

He also believes his versatility as either a defender or midfielder can help both him, and the team. Jones added: “I just want to try and get back in as quickly as possible.

“Having been out for a few weeks with injury and then having the two-week break, it is good to be back. I think we all need to get back playing games after the break. We were on a good run of form.

“I feel I’m pretty much at full fitness, we’ve been working hard the last couple of weeks, getting the fitness back in and it’s great being back.

“Playing two positions is a positive for me. It helps me to get into the team and I think it can also help the team out.”

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