Date: 17th April 2015 at 10:14pm
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Defender Toby Alderweireld has said that Southampton’s success this season means we are now there to be shot at by other teams and he’s not expecting that to change when we face Stoke City this weekend.

Speaking to saintsfc ahead of the game as we look to further consolidate our hopes of European football for next season, the impressive on loan Atletico Madrid player was ignoring the speculation surrounding his future and he was instead focused on ending the season strongly with us.

‘At home, they want to win for their supporters and we are now a team that everyone wants to beat because we are at the top of the competition. It`s difficult to win for us, I don`t think Stoke are going to lack anything, it will be difficult. They are winning and have picked up points. We have to be on our best to get the win. We want to win, we will do everything but it`s going to be tough. Hopefully we can get some points there.’

Echoing manager Ronald Koeman’s words about Stoke’s evolving style he went on to say that this year, and as the season has drawn on, he feels they are playing more football than before, but again like the gaffer, they are more than capable of switching it up and going direct so he knows we will have to be on the ball and dictate the game so they can’t catch us out.

‘This year they play more football than before, they still can play the long ball and then fight for the second ball but now they like to play football. We have to be very good and win our battles, especially the second ball, if we are going to beat them.’

With us having had a good season so far, Alderweireld said he had been proud to play his part in that and he’s been delighted with how his first year in the Premier League has gone.

‘It`s nice for a defender and all the defenders to be the best defence in the Premier League, but it`s not only us. It`s the midfielders too, the whole team is doing everything to stop the opponent. Kelvin Davis made a fantastic save last game at 0-0 and Fraser Forster before. It`s nice to have a defence like this and hopefully we can keep another clean sheet on Saturday.’

He ended his interview by saying that like we had done all season the only focus is on our own game, nobody is looking too far into other results and where other teams are as we can’t be distracted from the task at hand.

‘Of course you look to the results of them but you have to start with yourself. We have to keep the points, especially at home and then you can see to the other games. The focus is now on Stoke and it`s a very difficult game, but we are confident. It will be fantastic if we can get a European spot, we`ll do everything that we can.’

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