Koeman warns of different Palace ahead of Saturday

By SFC Media time Thu 10 Dec Club

Ronald Koeman says Southampton can take plenty of confidence from their last trip to Selhurst Park, but warned Crystal Palace are much improved since then.

Saints produced an excellent away performance to win 3-1 at Palace last Boxing Day, with goals from Sadio Mané, Ryan Bertrand and Toby Alderweireld making sure of the points.

Koeman’s side return to Selhurst Park having gone up against Alan Pardew’s outfit twice since – winning in the league and suffering defeat in the FA Cup fourth round.

“I think the Crystal Palace today is stronger than the Crystal Palace was at that stage of the season,” Koeman told youtube.com/southamptonfc.

“We know how we can win. We know what we have to do to win the game and we are looking forward to it.

“They are a strong team and they have a lot of physicality. They also have good quality players and they like to play offensive football.

“We have to stop that and to play our own game and put in our strengths. That will be very important and will be very decisive this weekend.

“Crystal Palace away is difficult to beat and we have the experience from last year. We had a good game, a good result and we are full of confidence we can repeat that result.”

Saturday’s game will also give both sides the opportunity to size up the opposition ahead of their meeting in the third round of the FA Cup in January.

“That’s the draw,” Koeman said. “At least it’s at home, but of course you like to play more against a Championship or League 1 team.

“But the game is at home. We had a bad experience last year so we will want to do it better now.”