Saints v United: Ole's exclusive preview
🎥 The boss discusses injuries, outgoings, training and what he expects from his players in our exclusive Q&A...
Could we just begin with Luke and Anthony - how are they doing? “They're doing okay but they won't be involved in this game. After the international break, hopefully Anthony will be ready for the Leicester game and Luke maybe another week or two after that.” So it is nothing too bad? “They've got slight injuries that they picked up in the game against Palace and in one respect it's a positive time to get it because it's international break for them and they won't miss too many games.” There are plenty of stories about other players. Alexis has moved to Inter and Chris might be going to Roma. Is there anything you can say? “Yeah, Alexis has signed for a year on loan with Inter Milan. We hope he is going to enjoy his time there, finding himself in the team, scoring goals and getting his form back. We know he has had a couple of injuries here and it didn't really work out for him. We want him to go there and find out what Alexis is about. Chris is on his way over, flying to Rome this morning to do a medical and all of the final details.” What is the thinking behind Chris going over there? “At the moment we have got six centre-backs and it is just something that popped up towards the end, in the last couple of days. Chris fancied the chance, to go over there. It is a new experience and a new adventure. He will come back better for it. It is a big club, it is a good league and there aren't too many English players who have played in Italy, so I think he will enjoy it.” How is the squad shaping up for Southampton? “Yeah we are looking good. Training has been good this week, we saw a good reaction to the last game. Of course it is always something you want to see from the players when they come back from a game, after they have won or lost. You want to see a reaction. It has been a positive one because they have been determined. Training has been good. We have played a few decent games with a nice, competitive edge.” What sort of response are you looking for then? “When you lose a game you want to bounce back and win the next one. That is the challenge for this team now. This is the first time we have lost since pre-season. How do we react? It is looking positive so far. We have done that so many times at this club. This is a new team, a young team, and we need to bounce back straightaway.” What do you think of Southampton's start to the season? “Their first game against Burnley is one of those that you almost write off because the weather was so awful. The wind was all over, it was that brand of game. Then they had Liverpool at home, which was an even game and it could have been a draw. Then they had a good win against Brighton, so it is a team with loads of energy, they are very direct, it makes it hard for us to settle down and play. Away from home, it is always tough. I see they have a couple of injuries as well so we are in the same boat in that respect.” With the break coming up, how important is it to get a good result? “Every game is a must-win game at this club. If you lose one then it is called a 'crisis' and it has been a 'crisis' this week [laughs]. So, of course, we are just looking forward to doing our jobs. The results, you cannot control. As you saw in the Palace game. We played a good game, created chance and if you played that one 10 times again we would win it 10 times. But you cannot always control the results of the game.” Finally, what did you think of the Carabao Cup draw that paired us against Rochdale at home? “It is a nice local derby. It will be competitive of course. It is a big game for the Rochdale lads and young Rathbone is an old friend of ours. We are looking forward to it. You are always happy if you get a home draw, that is the main thing in the cups.”