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Koeman annoyed that Southampton left it late

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman questioned why his side saved their best football for the last five minutes as they salvaged a last-gasp draw against Sunderland.

Jermain Defoe’s 85th-minute opener appeared to have given Sam Allardyce’s men all three points at St Mary’s but Virgil van Dijk slotted home deep into injury time to claim a point for a Southampton side that played with 10 men for the final 11 minutes following Jose Fonte’s sending-off.

Koeman hailed his side’s spirit but questioned why they did not produce better earlier in the game.

“The reaction [to going behind] was fantastic but my question to the players is ‘why do we show that spirit in the last five minutes?’” Koeman told the post-match news conference.

“They didn’t press us in the last five and we showed good character and good attacking movement.

“The goal was a great goal but the first 85, I didn’t see the that quality from our side.

“That’s disappointing, they controlled more in the second half. [Jermain] Defoe came on and we know his qualities.

“Playing in the Premier League, you need to be at 100 per cent every day.” 

The draw did, at least, end a run of two successive Premier League defeats for Southampton.

Koeman added: “I saw my team struggling in confidence and too many players far away from their best [with the exception of] maybe one or two.

“Oriol Romeu was fantastic today but you need more on their level to make it difficult for them because they had very good defensive organisation.”


Sat 5 Mar, 2016
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