Sabtu, 05 Januari 2013

Yoshida: Saints can win away

Maya Yoshida: Looking for three points

Tony Pulis' side are unbeaten in 16 league games at the Britannia Stadium following their comprehensive 3-1 defeat of Liverpool on Boxing Day.

Southampton are next up for Stoke and, while wary of the threat the home side pose, centre-back Yoshida is hopeful of ending their long unbeaten streak tomorrow.

"It will be a really, really tough game I think," the Japan international said. "Stoke have not lost a home game this season.

"They have many, many tall guys so it will be a more physical game.

"We have to give away less free-kicks, corner kicks and deep throw-ins otherwise they will put many, many long balls in the box. We have to think about this.

"Of course every time I want to win a game but this time it would be really nice because they haven't lost a home game (for a long time)."

Tomorrow will prove an interesting test for a Southampton defence that has shown signs of improvements recently.

After conceding 28 goal s in their first 10 games back in the Premier League, they have conceded just six in their last eight matches.

"The big reason is playing with the same players and for a long time," Yoshida said.

"The first time I played when I came here was in September so I had not enough time to make good communication.

"Jos Hooiveld had an injury and also many, many left- and right-backs had injuries.

"But now we play the same team and we play the same members for a long time. That is important, that continuity."

Yoshida has formed an impressive centre-back partnership with Jose Fonte since arriving from Dutch side VVV-Venlo in the summer.

The defender has settled quickly at the south coast club and has thanked countryman and team-mate Tadanari Lee for his help.

Unlike Yoshida, though, the forward has been on the periphery of the first-team this campaign.

Lee, who helped Saints secure promotion last term, struggled with injury at th e start of the season and has so far been unable to find a way back into the starting line-up.

"I often talk to him and I know now is a very difficult moment for him because he hasn't play many games," Yoshida said.

"Sometimes he is in the squad, sometimes not, but we are professional footballers.

"I can help him but he has to do his best, although I know we have a lot of good strikers.

"It is really, really difficult but I hope we will stand on the pitch together one day as soon as possible."

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