English Premiership

Pelle set for Saints return

2016-01-13 14:52
Graziano Pelle (Getty)

London - Southampton striker Graziano Pelle is returning to full fitness after missing the club's last four games with a knee injury and could play against Watford in the Premier League on Wednesday, manager Ronald Koeman said.

The Italy international is the south coast club's top scorer with 11 goals in all competitions, but has not found the back of the net since Nov. 1.

The Saints have won just one of their last eight league games, a poor run that has seen them drop to 13th in the table.

Speaking to reporters at his pre-match news conference, Koeman said the 30-year-old Pelle had been playing through pain for weeks, before he was omitted from the side after the 2-0 defeat by Tottenham Hotspur on Dec. 19.

"Maybe he did too many sessions on 60 or 70 per cent and that's sometimes difficult because then I believe you start to play the weekend also at 60 or 70 per cent," the Dutchman said.

"That was the big decision ... to put him out to give him the time to recover and then he is back at 100 percent, and what he needs to play on his level."

With his squad nearing full strength, the manager will be hoping that Southampton's fortunes are about to change.

Shane Long led the line during Pelle's absence, scoring two league goals in the 4-0 win over Arsenal on Boxing Day and Koeman said he was happy with the strikers in his squad.

"Normally we played always with Graziano in front and we know his qualities, the team knows his qualities... (but) Shane in my opinion did it very well," he said, quoted as saying by the club's website.

"Maybe he missed two or three big chances ... but he created a lot, he was doing his movements, but he's a different type of attacker than Graziano is."

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who was the best summer signing in the EPL?

 
 
/Sport
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
SuperBru Super Rugby challenge

Enter and challenge Sport24's staff!

Featured

As the Absa Premiership nears the Christmas break, a little over half the season remains. Who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Which teams will be relegated? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.