Ralph Hasenhüttl was full of praise for game-changing substitute Moussa Djenepo – but says the winger should stick to scoring, not singing.
The Malian summer signing performed his initiation song in the team hotel before Saturday’s 2-0 win at Brighton, in which Djenepo made the breakthrough less than two minutes after coming on.
Hasenhüttl urged Saints fans to be patient with the 21-year-old, and is looking forward to watching him play more often than listening to him sing.
“He wasn’t on the pitch very long before he made the first goal – it’s fantastic for him,” the manager said.
“The fans will love him immediately, but don’t put too much pressure on him.
“He must learn a lot, especially against the ball, but I like this guy – he’s very positive.
“After dinner he had to sing for the team and he did it in an interesting way. His scoring is better than his singing.”
Djenepo replaced Yan Valery in the 53rd minute at the Amex Stadium – a tactical change Hasenhüttl said was not linked to the horror tackle the right-back sustained in the first half, which saw Brighton’s Florin Andone shown a straight red card.
On the opposite side of the back four, Kevin Danso made his Saints debut in the absence of Ryan Bertrand, also earning positive recognition from the boss.
“It was not easy – first Premier League game away, in a position he hasn’t played very often in his life,” Hasenhüttl added.
“But we changed during the week and I tested it to see if it works or not. He showed he could play there – especially in defence he is very good one against one, and very quick.
“When we needed more offensive power on this side, we brought on Moussa, and I think it was a good decision.”