Marcus Barnes says scoring goals in pre-season has been a bonus, as he continues his return to action after a long injury lay-off.
Barnes has been in fine form for Southampton’s Under-23 team, notching more goals for them in their latest pre-season win, over AFC Bournemouth, on Thursday, which followed on from his decisive effort that saw off Fulham last weekend.
It’s been an anxious wait for the forward to play again, and he’s delighted with how he’s settled back in so far.
“I’m just happy to get minutes because it’s been a long time since I played and to get the goals is a bit of a bonus,” he told youtube.com/southamptonfc after the 4-3 win against Cherries, at Staplewood.
“I just love playing football and that’s all I want to do right now. Wherever I’m put on the pitch, out wide or up front, I just want to score goals and perform well.”
Having started pre-season with a good goalscoring record, Barnes is looking to make an impact in the first-team, particularly after seeing manager Claude Puel’s desire to utilise the club’s academy.
“It’s good to see and I trained with them for the first week before they went away, so we’ve got to know the manager and what he likes, how he wants us to attack as well,” Barnes highlighted.
“I just want to continue performing well for the Under-23s and then push on into the first team, train with them get on the bench and keep doing well.”
The Under-23s have one more warm-up game to come next week, before beginning their Premier League 2 campaign away at Liverpool a week on Sunday.
“With Liverpool away to come, we beat them 5-0 away last season,” Barnes recalled. “So they’re going to want revenge and we’ve got to be on the ball to make sure we win again.”