Nathan Redmond was left ruing Southampton’s slow start after the team fell to a first Premier League defeat of the season at Everton.
Saints were guilty of a similar offence on the opening day against Burnley, before improving substantially as the game went on, and Redmond admitted an improved first half was high on the agenda at Goodison Park.
Instead Saints found themselves 2-0 down at the interval. Danny Ings halved the deficit in the second period, but it was not enough to deny the hosts victory.
“We didn’t start well today,” Redmond said.
“We didn’t start well last week against Burnley and it’s one of the things that was highlighted – we wanted to make sure we started as well as we could, but we didn’t really get a foothold in the game, albeit we created a few clear-cut chances in the first half.
“There’s a slight sense we should be more clinical with those chances, but we’ve given away a few free-kicks in the wrong areas and let them score two goals that could’ve been stopped in the build-up.
“There are a lot of things we have to sit down and work on, which starts on the training ground.
“We don’t want to be looking back at the end of the season wishing we’d picked up points here or there.
“We don’t want to be in a position where we’re fighting for our lives in the last five or six games of the season, like we were last season, because we know this club and this group of players deserve better.”