English Premiership

Hughes to Saints players: 'You've got to deal with pressure'

2018-05-08 10:15
Mark Hughes (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Saints boss Mark Hughes has called for his players to keep calm ahead of Tuesday’s crucial relegation clash with Swansea City.

Southampton travel to the Liberty Stadium knowing a win would lift them three points clear of Carlos Carvalhal’s team in 18th place with one game left and a better goal difference.

With champions Manchester City at home on the final day of the season, Hughes knows that the Swansea game is his team’s best opportunity to earn the points they need to ensure their Premier League survival.

After Southampton conceded a last-gasp equaliser to Everton on Saturday, Hughes has asked his players to show a bit more composure.

"I think it is just calmness. You have got to deal with pressure, you have got to think clearly," he said.

"Obviously, when things are flying around, you have try to do the right things and you have to take your chances when you create them.

"For the most part, we did that (at Everton). We proved to ourselves that we have that capability, we just have to do it.

"We just mustn't allow ourselves to be deflated by what's ahead of us and what's just occurred.

"We played well. We are not down, in terms of confidence and in terms how we are playing, we were damaged because we got so close to getting a significant result and a significant victory which clearly would have helped our situation.

"But it is still very much in our hands and very quickly we will get this out of our system and go again."

His opposite number Carvalhal echoed Hughes’ call for cool heads.

“We must have emotional control and we must act and do the proper things. Not to make mistakes. This is the way,” Carvalhal said.

“It is not a time (for me) to scream. It is a time to be focused.”


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