16 Aug Southampton are Reds-ready after ‘intense’ week, says Hasenhuttl
Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl has worked on every aspect of his team’s game as they prepare to tackle European champions Liverpool.
The Saints opened the new Premier League campaign with a disappointing 3-0 loss at Burnley, where all the goals came during the closing 25 minutes.
Hasenhuttl cancelled a planned day off at the start of the week to help sharpen focus towards facing last season’s league runners-up, who beat Chelsea on penalties to win the Super Cup in Istanbul on Wednesday night.
“It’s been an interesting, intense week. We had good sessions and also a few other things we have to speak about. We took the time to prepare in a good way I hope, but then we must show this,” Hasenhuttl said on the Southampton website.
“We look on the last game and work on a few weaknesses we had, but also focus on the game that is coming now. It is a different game, a different opponent, and not with less quality.
“Like always against these big teams, we must not give them too many chances, because they have so much quality they don’t need a lot to score.
“And, finally, to focus on the moments when we have the ball, and when we win the ball what we do there, and know that we also have the quality to score against Liverpool.
“We showed that last season, so it’s about giving a really, really good performance. A good, committed performance, defensively well-organised and offensively with the right decisions in the right moments.”
Hasenhuttl added: “We have worked on every part of our game and I’m sure we can also create chances for us, and finally we have the players to score also against Liverpool.”
New signing Kevin Danso has joined up with the squad this week after his deadline day switch from German club Augsburg, and the Austrian defender could be in line for a swift debut.
Captain Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg should also be involved, having been ill while travelling to Burnley.
Whatever side he sends out at St Mary’s on Saturday, Hasenhuttl is expecting the required response.
“Against these teams you must be convinced that you can do it. Nearly surprising them is not enough,” he said.
“In this part I think we must develop ourselves from last week.
“I want to see a reaction from the team that is really believing in what they are doing and stay on the track until the last minute, and if we are like that then we are not so easy to beat.”