England manager Gareth Southgate paid tribute to Southampton’s hospitality after the Three Lions rounded off the international break with a night of outstanding entertainment at St Mary’s.
The Euro 2020 qualifier against Kosovo was the first time England have played a competitive fixture away from Wembley since 2006, and their first time back at St Mary’s since 2002.
Saints’ sold-out home was treated to a 5-3 blockbuster, but Southgate was keen to thank England’s hosts for more than just the 90 minutes of action on the pitch.
“I thought it was brilliant – not only the experience we’ve had tonight, but also the access we’ve had to the training ground, which has been absolutely top level,” he said.
“The people couldn’t have been friendlier or more helpful.
“We’ve had a brilliant experience and the atmosphere in the ground was absolutely top – credit to the Kosovo fans as well, who added to that.
“I hope the people have enjoyed having England nearby, and being able to walk down the road and see them has hopefully been a special experience.
“We certainly gave them a game to remember. Who says international football’s dull?”