Claude Puel full of praise for Saints


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Southampton coach Claude Puel was quick to praise his side after they bounced back from their EFL Cup final disappointment to beat Watford on Saturday.

The Saints were left heartbroken at Wembley last Sunday as Manchester United won the trophy thanks to a 3-2 victory, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic scoring a late winner.

Puel admits his players found it tough for a couple of days but they showed tremendous heart to beat the Hornets away from home.

Nathan Redmond score a brace, while Manolo Gabbiadini also scored as Southampton recorded a 4-3 victory.

Watford continued to fight in what was an entertaining game but Puel believes his players deserve plenty of credit. He told Sky Sports: “Perfect? I don’t know.

I’m not happy for their third goal. We can defend better but of course it’s a good result after a big disappointment with the final.

“It was important to come back with a good spirit and attitude and I am happy for the players and the fans.

We knew it was important to give a good answer, and the performance was good after three or four difficult days for us.

“We went down after a few minutes and it was difficult to make a start, but we did well to come back.

We tried to play football and make it difficult for them. Our goals were fantastic, it was good football and I like this.

It’s important to continue this work.” Southampton now face a long lay-off due to postponed games, with the club next in action against Tottenham on March 19.

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