Horseman: We're making massive strides

By SFC Media Mon 06 Jan Saints v Everton
Photo by Isabelle Field | Dave Horseman

Under-23s coach Dave Horseman said his side are making "massive strides", after a hard fought point at home to Everton in Premier League 2.

Saints took the lead in the 65th minute through midfielder Lucas Defise, following some good work down the right by the returning Dan N'Lundulu.

But the lead was short lived; Everton breaking two minutes later to equalise via centre-back and captain Morgan Feeney.

Despite not taking three points, Horseman believes there are plenty of positives for a side who are far from their pinnacle just yet.

"I think we’re making massive strides," said Horseman. "I think anyone that watches us at the start of the season compared to now will see it’s like a different team."

"We’ve clearly got some patterns and I think teams are coming here now with a plan to maybe nullify us. With a deeper block than what they used to. Which caused us a few problems just to break down.

"Once we got them in at half time and tried to work a couple of movements, trying to get a couple more of our creative players on the ball, I think it opened up a couple more chances and we got a few more goalscoring opportunities.

"The way we’re trying to play, we’re trying to spread out. The Southampton way really. We’re not doing anything new in what Southampton has always done. Trying to spread out creates a lot more 1v1s defensively, and I think the boys stood up to it tonight.

"They did really well 1v1 technically, but also that heart and desire to stop shots and win tackles and headers so really, really pleasing."

THERE'S STILL WORK TO DO BUT THE BOYS HAVE DONE MAGNIFICENTLY. THEY'VE TRAINED WELL PARTICULARLY OVER CHRISTMAS. I'M GLAD WE GOT THE POINT TONIGHT BECAUSE I THINK THEY DESERVED THAT.

Dave Horseman
Southampton Fc Under-23s Coach

The point takes Saints level on points with second bottom Wolves, a team they will only overtake if they put their defensive mistakes right according to Horseman.

"There’s a pattern at the moment. We equalised at Derby and conceded straight away and then equalised and conceded straight away.

"Then obviously tonight we’ve scored and if we sit the next five minutes out with a bit of possession then actually you counter-attack and probably finish 2-0.

"We’re still working towards being physically absolutely as fit as we can possibly be. The bigger we make the pitch, the more ground they’re going to have to cover. So there’s still work to do, the boys have done magnificently.

"They’ve trained really well, particularly over Christmas. I’m glad we got the point tonight because I think they deserved that."

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