Mauricio Pochettino says Southampton’s playing style will not be affected by the weather conditions this weekend.
Saturday’s visit of Stoke City is expected to be played out amid heavy rain and strong winds – conditions similar to those that accompanied Saints’ trip to the Potteries earlier this season.
But Pochettino insists the weather will not force his side to abandon their playing philosophies, adding that the squad learned from their visit to the Britannia Stadium last November.
“We’ve been looking at the forecast and it seems it will be very tough this weekend, just as it as been over the past few days,” he told Saints Player this afternoon.
“When we played them at their place, we learned how to learn to play against a terrible wind and in very tough weather conditions.
“We need to be prepared for everything we are up against. It’s clear that the weather conditions have an effect on how you play in every single game, but we believe in our philosophy and the style of football we want to implement here at Southampton.
“That isn’t going to change, regardless of the weather conditions. We need to be fully-focused and mustn’t let outside conditions affect how we play.”
Saints’ victory at Fulham last weekend means the side has not lost in six games – its second-longest unbeaten run of the season.
Another victory on Saturday could well see the side jump above Newcastle into eighth place, with Pochettino saying that his players are focused on securing a second consecutive win.
“The team is doing well,” said the manager. “Mentally and physically, we are feeling strong – especially after such a great win against Fulham last weekend.
“We’ve worked very well during the week – despite the bad weather – and we’re very keen to get into the game against Stoke, who will undoubtedly be a very tough opponent.
“We just take every game as it comes. We don’t look further ahead than the next game, so we’re focused on getting three points against Stoke.
“If we get three points and that allows us to climb positions in the table, then that is a great incentive.”