Ryan Bertrand says Saints will head to Arsenal tonight full of belief, as they seek to do the double over the Gunners this season.
Ronald Koeman’s side triumphed 4-0 when the teams met at St Mary’s on Boxing Day, and Bertrand says that result, coupled with Saints’ current three-match winning streak, will provide them with plenty of confidence at the Emirates Stadium.
“It gives us belief, but also we have to be a bit wary that they're going to want to put right those losses, so we have to be right at it, but hopefully we can get the points again,” Bertrand told youtube.com/southamptonfc.
"Of late we've had a few good performances and managed to keep clean sheets and scored goals. We've had a good record of late against them and we're looking forward to the game.”
Saints visited the Emirates twice last season, winning 2-1 in the Capital One Cup and suffering late heartbreak in a 1-0 league defeat, so Bertrand knows they are well capable of matching the Gunners on their own turf.
"That's something we have to take confidence from, but also be aware of the fact that they are going to be really up for this, probably perhaps more than ever, but it's important that we just focus and raise our standards to hopefully overcome them again,” he said.
“I think they're right up there to be contenders for the title at the end of the season and rightly so. It's our job to focus on the task at hand and don't get carried away with all that. It all comes down to what happens on the pitch on the day and hopefully we can make things go our way.”
With Saints having moved back into the top half of the table, Bertrand believes a positive result tonight would stand the team in fine stead ahead of the final few months of the campaign.
“We're always looking to each game, and to take confidence and analyse our performances and improve as a team, so hopefully we can get a good result, analyse what we've done right and what we've done wrong and move on and just go from strength to strength,” he said.
"We had a poor start to the season. I think the second half has got off to a good start, so we have to be realistic and not get too carried away as well.
“I think if we can go for consistency and finish in and around where we finished last year that would be a fantastic season again.”