Ronald Koeman believes injuries were a factor in Southampton’s late defeat to Arsenal, Sky
The game was goalless until the 89th minute when Alexis Sanchez scored to condemn the Saints to their second consecutive defeat and third game without a win. Southampton remain third but following a draw with Aston Villa and a defeat to Manchester City, are only a point clear of Monday opponents Manchester United.
Southampton ended the game with 10 men when Toby Alderweireld was forced off with injury after Koeman had used all three substitutes, and the manager said injuries hurt his team’s cause.
“For the first hour we were outstanding and our team gave a very good reaction after the loss last Sunday,” he said, having also lost Jack Cork and Dusan Tadic to injuries during the contest. “We were unlucky with the injuries and that gave Arsenal the motivation to bring more in the last 10 minutes, pressing with 11 players against 10 players.
“Toby couldn’t play on,” Koeman continued. “If it’s a kick on the ankle you can ask them to play on, but it was a hamstring problem. You can’t continue with a hamstring injury. Jack is the same ankle as last season, we have to wait until tomorrow to know something more. Toby is hamstring, for how long I don’t know.”
Koeman added that he was content with the overall performance, if not the result, particularly in light of Sunday’s home reverse against City. “Our goalkeeper Fraser Forster was outstanding but it wasn’t enough to keep a clean sheet,” he noted. “I was proud of the spirit we showed, the reaction after the last game. We played good football and we created some good opportunities but it wasn’t enough. We were really unlucky.”
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