Date: 25th January 2016 at 5:10pm
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Manager Ronald Koeman has spoken of Charlie Austin’s instant impact, and skipper Jose Fonte has spoken about confidence in the group given our recent run of results.

Beginning with Koeman, having handed our January arrival in his debut late on in the game against Manchester United at Old Trafford, the former Queens Park Rangers man (and no doubt England hopeful once more) didn’t take long to find the net and gift us all three points and our second win on their patch in as many seasons, and Koeman was obviously delighted with the impact he had.

Speaking to saintsfc in his post game press interviews, the gaffer explained.

‘It was fantastic. I said to him to play in front with Shane and when he came onto the pitch it was a free-kick. I said ‘okay, it`s nice to come on the pitch and score`, but it was a little bit later that he did. He has big numbers in scoring goals and he showed that. It gives competition to everybody and it`s a great signing. It`s great to work with those kind of players. It was a great debut for him on a personal aspect, but the whole team – how we work together and the organisation – is a big compliment to everybody.’

With a very late introduction in the game for him having been named on the bench, Koeman explained why he had waited until the 79th minute to introduce him.

‘We know he had a good week training, but he`s coming out of an injury and he didn`t play for five or six weeks. Then you have to be a little bit patient, but he had 15 minutes with the extra time. It was a great goal and a big win.’

As for Fonte, he joked that Austin’s winner was ‘written in the stars’ and with three wins on the spin now, confidence was once again high in the Southampton camp.

‘It was written in the stars that Charlie Austin would come on and score from a good set piece. That`s what he is capable of. You couldn`t ask for more. You know what you`re going to get with Charlie – it`s something that`s automatic to him. We were really strong mentally and kept digging away and he came on to a get a good winner. It was great for him to come on and get us the goal. It`s a really good three points for us and the perfect debut for him.’

Adding about the game, our recent run of form etc.

‘We talked before the game about the confidence we have at the moment following two clean sheets. Everyone was on their game, everyone was focused and we were very consistent. We believed until the end that we could get a goal. It`s a great three points and another clean sheet, which is a really good effort.’

With the 352 formation being used across all three recent wins, Fonte went on to say he felt that it suited the strengths of the side – so now it’s onto Arsenal again.

‘We`re going to enjoy this one and obviously confidence is sky-high now. We know that Arsenal are a great team but we are very comfortable in the system now and we believe that nobody can score against us at the moment. We`re looking forward to that game although we know it`s going to be extremely difficult. This Premier League season has been very unpredictable so it`s important for us to take it game-by-game. We`ll see in the last 15 games what we can do, but the most important thing is to keep picking up points.’

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