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Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino has backed third-choice goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga to do the business in the absence of the injured Artur Boruc.
Boruc sustained a fractured hand when he tried to save a shot from Demba Ba in the Saints’ 3-1 defeat to Chelsea at the weekend and faces up to six weeks on the sidelines while the injury heals.
Second-choice custodian Kelvin Davis is also sidelined with a back problem and so the onus has now fallen on the 21-year-old Argentinian to shore up the Southampton rearguard over the next few weeks.
The youngster could see quite a lot of action as the fixtures come thick and fast over the festive period but Pochettino has backed his compatriot and all his players to keep up the good work.
“Of course we are going to miss Artur, he is a great goalkeeper, but we have complete trust in the whole squad,” he said. “Not just Paulo Gazzaniga but the whole squad.”
Southampton welcome Aston Villa to the south coast on Wednesday evening looking to bounce back from consecutive defeats to Arsenal and Chelsea.
And the South American tactician retains compete confidence in his charges as he feels they were not inferior to either of the two sides that recently beat them.
“We may have suffered two defeats, but overall we competed very well against two very tough sides,” he added. “We did make some mistakes which meant it was not possible for us to win those games, but in none of those cases were Arsenal or Chelsea superior to Southampton.”