Austin: I want 20 next season

By SFC Media time Mon 22 May Men's First team
Photo by Matt Watson | Charlie Austin

Charlie Austin has set himself a 20-goal target for next season, and says Southampton's players can be proud of their work during the 2016/17 campaign.

The Saints striker returned to the starting line-up in Sunday's home game against Stoke City, ending a five-and-a-half-month spell out of Claude Puel's XI with a shoulder injury.

Having scored nine times before being sidelined in early December, a fit-again Austin is hoping he can net a significant number of goals next term.

"I was on a roll with nine goals by the start of December and I really thought I was going to get to 20," he said.

"I was playing some really good football. But next year I'm going to give it another good go and try to get to 20 as quickly as I can – that will be the aim."

Austin also reflected on a fourth consecutive top-eight finish for Saints, and believes there is plenty to be proud of from the season just finished.

"The club needs to appreciate how well the lads have done throughout the season," he said.

"Stoke was our 53rd game of the season, we finished eighth in the Premier League, we played in the Europa League and we had a cup run and got to a final. We've got to be happy with that.

"You look at the top six and they've been solid this year and rightly so they've gone away with it. But we'll regroup over the summer, come back pre-season and have a right good go in one, if not two, of the cups and have a good go for Europe next year."

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