Aston Villa manager Remi Garde was relieved to take “a big point” from Southampton on Saturday, after his side held off a late comeback at St Mary’s Stadium.
The visitors found themselves under siege for most of the first half, but managed to go into the break 1-0 up after Joleon Lescott was left unmarked to side-foot home a Jordan Veretout corner.
Although Oriol Romeu levelled things up 17 minutes from time, with a goal that was almost identical to Lescott’s, the bottom-placed side dug deep to claim just their sixth point of the Premier League campaign.
“It’s a big point,” Garde told Sky Sports.
“We suffered a lot because Southampton created many chances and we were under pressure for long periods in the game.
“We showed a very good spirit and attitude and I’m very happy about that and that’s why I think we deserved this point.”
The Frenchman, who is still searching for his first win since succeeding Tim Sherwood early last month, was delighted with the attitude his charges showed as they repelled wave after wave of Southampton attacks, especially in the first 20 minutes.
“There was solidarity between the players and the desire to fight all together not to concede a goal,” he said.”We didn’t have that same attitude at Everton, or even against Watford.
“Today we knew that we would be under a lot of pressure because we knew that Southampton have a lot of pace up front and are strong in midfield.
“The answer we gave was very good in terms of spirit.”
The result at St Mary’s saw Villa set an unwanted new club record of 14 games without a win.
But Garde insisted that the kind of resolve his side demonstrated on the south coast will stand them in good stead as they look to climb off the foot of the table.
“I prefer to have this solidarity in every game much more than talent, because solidarity is the key when you are fighting not to be relegated,” he said.
“If we show this kind of performance again in terms of spirit, we’ll get more points.”