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Pochettino: No Saints crisis

Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino is in upbeat mood despite three straight defeats, a growing injury list and the prospect of facing Manchester City at St Mary's on Saturday.

Last Updated: 06/12/13 at 17:32 Post Comment

Mauricio Pochettino: No crisis at St Mary's

Mauricio Pochettino: No crisis at St Mary's

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The 3-2 defeat to Aston Villa on Wednesday followed defeats to Chelsea and Arsenal and Pochettino has lost the services of key players Victor Wanyama, Nathanial Clyne, Morgan Schneiderlin and Artur Boruc, and possibly Jose Fonte for the visit of title hopefuls City.

Pochettino insists that Saints have a strong enough squad to cope with the loss of players and form.

"I believe that every game is a test, not just against Manchester City," the Argentinian said. "Every single game is a very large test for us.

"It is clear that we picked up some injuries against Aston Villa that we did not have in the past, but nothing has changed within this team.

"This team still believes, it still believes in how we play, and what a great chance for us to go and invert this negative run we are on in front of our fans in a great stadium. This is a very good chance for us to change our fortunes right now.

"I am confident that we can overcome this bad run that we are on. That is what we are working for.

"The project in Southampton is to mix very young players with a lot more experienced players.

"This is a big test for us right now and it also gives us a good chance to bring some of the younger players, such as Harrison Reed, Sam Gallagher, Cody Cropper, Matt Targett, Will Britt.

"It is a very good experience for them to be in the mix with more veteran players in the senior side. It is a very good chance for us to execute that plan to bring younger players into the side."

Former Espanyol manager Pochettino will be pitting his wits once again against old foe Manuel Pellegrini, a man he knows well from his time in Spain.

"I have many memories of having faced Manuel Pellegrini in La Liga, when he was at Villarreal, Malaga and Real Madrid," he said.

"I even knew him when I was with Under-18s in Argentina. He was managing the Chile Under-20s some 25 years ago.

"I have great respect for him. I wouldn't say that we were friends, but we have a great working relationship and he is someone I admire. We have a very good professional relationship."

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