Koeman praises Southampton spirit after victory

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman was full of praise for the spirit his side showed as they ended a run of five successive defeats in all competitions with a 3-0 win over Everton, reports the club’s official website.

The Saints took the lead seven minutes before half-time when visiting striker Romelu Lukaku turned the ball into his own net from a corner, moments after they had a strong penalty shout waved away by referee Jon Moss.

The second arrived when Everton were again unable to deal with a cross into the penalty area, with Shane Long heading the ball down to Graziano Pelle, who netted his eighth Premier League goal of the season. Defender Maya Yoshida then sealed a comfortable victory by turning in a superb cross from Steven Davis.

And afterwards, Koeman hailed the character of his side after picking up a first win since November 8. He said: “To have a good positivity about the game is important because winning games brings players with more confidence. We worked very hard and I think that was the key today to win the game. We showed unbelievable spirit today and that was the difference between last Tuesday and today.

“We do not want to have these kinds of defeats that we had in the last few weeks. Today was a fantastic example of how you have to work as a football player and they showed that today. That was the difference between Everton and Southampton.”

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