Stuart Armstrong was pleased to be able to express his creative side as Southampton chalked up a first win of pre-season with a 3-2 victory over Jiangsu Suning.
The former Celtic midfielder made his mark in the 26th minute in Xuzhou, skipping away from a tackle and crossing left-footed to the far post, where Manolo Gabbiadini headed home the opening goal.
Saints soon found themselves 2-1 down, but Nathan Redmond restored parity before Sam Gallagher tucked in the winner 13 minutes from time.
Armstrong followed up his 45-minute appearance in the 3-3 draw against Schalke with 60 minutes against the Chinese outfit, and was delighted to register an assist.
“That’s always nice on an individual sense, but also as a team I felt we played better today and had a strong finish to win the game. It was a good all-round team performance.
“It was good to get some more minutes and it was a bit cooler than the other night, so that was better for running around and being a bit more creative.
“I felt we built nicely in this second game and created some nice things.
“Especially after the first game against a good German team in Schalke, it was a different style of team and a different challenge.”
Now nearing the end of the trip, Armstrong reflected on a positive start to his Saints career.
“It’s into the deep end,” he added. “Two weeks in China with new faces and a new way of playing at a new club, but that’s probably the best way to go about it and it’s been very enjoyable.
“It’s been great. Since I arrived on day one, everyone’s been really nice, really friendly and I hope that continues.”