Date: 18th January 2016 at 10:11am
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New striker Charlie Austin has said moving to St Mary’s Stadium when he learned of Southampton’s interest in him was a no brainer.

Having come to us for a reported £4million and signing a four and a half year deal in the process, the 26 year old told saintsfc.

‘I didn`t realise Southampton was an option until a couple of weeks ago, and when a club like Southampton comes in for you, it`s a real head turner. To be honest, I didn`t think I was going to move until the summer, but as soon as Southampton showed an interest in me, it was the one club I wanted to go to. If we could get the deal as soon as possible I was ready to go, and lucky enough it`s now and I`m delighted.’

Having come up against the side on a few occasions since stepping into the professional game, he’s seen almost first hand the rise of the club and the ambitions they’ve shown, and that just made the move easier.

‘You see the progression from when I was playing for Swindon against Southampton back in League 1 five or six years ago. You just look at where they`ve gone from then – straight up to the Premier League, Europa League last season. So for me it`s important to come to a club on the up and I can`t wait to be involved. When Southampton came in it was a no-brainer. I think the last five years have shown the ambition the club has and I just want to be part of that now. I`m delighted to join forces and hopefully bring my quality into a team with a lot of quality players already here. I can`t wait to meet the lads and show them what I can do on the pitch.’

Having had one taste of the Premier League during QPR’s season in 2014-15, he’s obviously also pleased to have now returned to the top flight and he’s looking to have a similar impact in front of the net following on from his 18 strikes for them.

‘I think it`s important as a centre forward to be established in any league you play, and to play in the Premier League is massive. I had one season and then went back to the Championship, but now it`s important for me to establish myself in the Premier League. I got 18 goals during my first season and I just want to push on from that now.’

He was asked the obvious question of whether he needed to prove himself again and whether he felt that pressure and he wasn’t overly concerned that some may think of him as a one season wonder, as his goal exploits across his career have spoken for themselves and with 16 Championship appearances this year and a return of ten goals, clearly his Premiership 18 wasn’t a flash in the pan.

‘I think I proved myself the first time round. People always ask if a player can make the grade. I feel like I`ve set my standard now with that year at QPR. Now I just need to bring that to Southampton and take it to the next level. I think any professional would thrive under the pressure, because they know what they`ve reached before and they want to get back to those heights. I don`t really set any targets. I just try to score as many times as I can every time I step across the white line.’

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