We must play to win, says van Dijk

By SFC Media Wed 07 Dec Saints vs Be'er Sheva

Virgil van Dijk says Southampton must be fully focused on beating Hapoel Be’er Sheva and not think about playing for a 0-0 draw when the sides meet tomorrow night.

The teams will face off in a UEFA Europa League Group K decider, with one of them set to advance to the knockout stages as runners-up.

For Saints, a goalless draw or a win will see them reach the last 32, but van Dijk says the latter of those two results must be the aim.

"We definitely need to go and try to win the game,” he said. “I think if you play for a 0-0 it goes the wrong way.

“We need to be focused, we need to show that we want to win the game, and if we play well I think we have a good chance and we will work hard to win the game.”

Saints have not picked up as many results on the road this season as they would have liked, but they have been very strong at St Mary’s, with only one of their 11 games at home this term ending in defeat.

Van Dijk therefore takes plenty of confidence into tomorrow night’s clash.

"The away form is something we need to improve, but at home we feel strong, we've been playing well and it's not a good place to come if you're an opponent of us,” he said.

“Thursday is going to be a tough game, but we need to show from the first minute to the last that we want to win the game, we want to go through and as a club that we deserve to go through.”

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