Hughes relishing first home game

By SFC Media Sat 14 Apr Saints v Chelsea

Mark Hughes is relishing a first home game in charge of Southampton and has assured supporters they can play their part in securing a valuable result against Chelsea.

Hughes took over at Saints in mid-March, but has had to wait a full month before overseeing a match at St Mary's, due to an extended run of away fixtures in recent weeks.

With just two more home games to come after this one, Hughes is hoping for an atmosphere similar to the one he experienced as a player at the club, when he helped the team to Premier League survival in the 1998/99 season.

"We're at home, which I'm really looking forward to," he said. "It's my first game there, and it seems an age since we had a home game, so it will be good to get back to the stadium and create an atmosphere not only with everybody behind us, but giving them something to really cheer as well, and that's what we'll try and do."

Expanding on the role the supporters can play, the Saints boss said: "It's huge for us. We're in a situation that's clearly of our own making.

"It's a recognition of that. We have to understand that, take it on the chin and get on with making sure we get out of it.

"Everybody pulling in the right direction is going to help that, and any negativity that's round the club just needs to go away while we do what we have to do.

"I'm sure through experience, when I was a player here in similar circumstances in difficult times, the key thing from my point of view was the memory of how everybody pulled together and really drove us to where we needed to be, and I'm sure that will happen again."

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