'Real deal': Freddie Ljungberg delivers his verdict on Southampton and Hasenhuttl's tactics

Sam Preston December 8, 2020
'Real deal': Freddie Ljungberg delivers his verdict on Southampton and Hasenhuttl's tactics
Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images

Former Arsenal coach Freddie Ljungberg was part of the punditry team on Sky Sports for Southampton’s 2-1 win over Brighton last night.

He spoke on Monday Night Football before and after the game about what it’s like to play against the Saints.

The Swede was part of Mikel Arteta’s coaching team for the Gunners’ 2-0 win at St Mary’s in June.

He offered his insight into Ralph Hasenhuttl’s tactics and was very complimentary indeed.

Matt Watson/Southampton FC via Getty Images

“If you look at Southampton, when we played them and it’s the same now, lot of energy and they were really going for it,” said Ljungberg.

“They had a big mistake on the goal we scored. But second half, they were all over us with their energy and could have scored. Hard place to go.

“They’re the real deal, with the energy they show, they go for you all the time. It’s difficult to get out against them, they have some good players up from. They’re difficult to play against. They look very good.”

Southampton are back up to fifth in the Premier League after last night’s win, just four points off table-toppers Tottenham.

With Danny Ings now back in the fold, they might well fancy their chances of sustaining that position into the new year.

As Ljungberg eludes to, it’s so tough to play against the Saints because they don’t give you any time to breathe.

Not every side in the top flight has such a clear identity, and that is something Hasenhuttl deserves immense credit for.

The Premier League table is starting to take on a familiar look, but Southampton are remaining in the race for Europe, and Ljungberg’s comments indicate Hasenhuttl’s men can keep this going for a while yet.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.