Southampton Under-18s are back in action on Saturday as they welcome their Swansea City counterparts to Staplewood.
Saints picked up their first away win of the season against the Swans back in September, while the Welsh side are currently bottom of the table.
Swansea did however pick up only their second win of the season against Norwich City last weekend, and coach Craig Fleming believes they will be coming up against a different side to the one they faced earlier in the season.
“I think they’re much improved. The results they have got have probably proved that,” Fleming told youtube.com/southamptonfc.
“They are a footballing side like ourselves – they look to get it down and play, but on the defensive side, just like a lot of teams in the league, it needs improving.
“But they’ve improved a lot from when we played them earlier in the season.”
And Fleming says he’ll be fielding a much-changed side against the Swans this weekend. “It’ll be vastly changed,” he added. “Because the Under-21s programme has started again and their squad is very small at the moment.
“They’ve got a few boys out on loan and a few injuries so a lot of our boys were involved and will be involved for the Under-21s on Monday.
“Saturday will be an opportunity for some of the boys who haven’t had as many minutes as they might’ve liked.”
One player who could benefit from the likely changes is Rugare Musendo. The defensive midfielder has made one start and a handful of appearances from the bench so far this season and hopes to make an impression this weekend.
“I’ve not had a lot of game time but I’ve been working hard to do what the coach wants and perform well in training. Hopefully I can be making more starts soon,” said Musendo.
“It’ll be a good test, we did well at their place. We’re just hoping to get a victory now because obviously we’ve lost four games in a row and we need to put that right.
“I think there’s always the mentality there to perform well and play well. We’re just going to make sure we work hard. It has been good training this week, so we need to push on and have a good performance.”
Saturday’s game against the Swans gets under way at the Staplewood Campus at 11am GMT.