Fleming: Winning the Southampton way

By SFC Media Fri 03 Nov Norwich v Saints
Photo by Matt Watson | Craig Fleming

After playing out a 1-1 draw at Norwich in the league a month ago, Saints' youngsters will look to gain the upper hand on their divisional rivals in Saturday's Premier League Cup tie.

Fleming's young charges began this year's competition strongly, with a comfortable win over Premier League giants Man City, and the Under-18s coach is keen to strengthen their grip on Group C.

Tomorrow's opponents, Norwich also made a winning start after beating Reading 4-0 and top the group on goal difference.

"Overall performances have been good, win lose or draw, I haven't seen a drop in tempo," Fleming said, reflecting on the past couple of results.

"Obviously we want to win, but we want to do that the Southampton way. We've been making the boys aware of running themes, one is being clinical in front of goal. They've tightened up on it and realised that scoring goals is just as important as defending well.

"Being an ex-defender myself, I've put it on the centre-backs to start contributing from set-plays. We've got excellent deliveries from Will Smallbone, Jake Vokins, Kornelius Hansen and Will Ferry - those balls need to be converted more often."

Talking about the prospect of travelling back to Norwich, where Fleming spent eleven years of his professional career, the U18s coach added: "It is a place I know really well. They build solid teams at all age groups, big powerful boys who will be well organised.

"Beating Man City by three, and Chelsea by four recently shows what we are capable of.

"They've proven that when they are really at it, they can be as good as any in the country. The secret is asking them to produce that week in week out."

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