Southampton midfielder Stuart Armstrong believes that it is too early to consider the prospect of relegation.
Saints currently lie second from bottom in the Premier League after 12 games and have only won two league matches all season.
Saturday’s 2-1 defeat against Everton – who, prior to kick-off were just one space and three points above them – has left the south coast club in dire straits.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side now find themselves five points from safety due to their terrible goal difference (-18, the worst in the division), making their upcoming matches against Arsenal, Watford, Norwich, Newcastle and West Ham absolutely vital for their chances of survival.
Armstrong – who has been limited to just 265 minutes of Premier League action this season – believes that it is too early to say if Southampton are in a relegation battle, however, telling the Daily Echo:
“We certainly need to get some points out of them because nobody wants to be towards the bottom of the table.
“Points are very important for us at the moment. I think it’s still very early days [to think about relegation].
“A lot of things can change in football because it’s a very transient game.
“We will keep believing in ourselves.
“We are a group that believe in ourselves and we go into every game thinking we can do well and get points out of it.”
Saints face a tough trip to the Emirates after the international break, and won’t feel too confident in getting anything from that clash with their form this season considered.
However, the true test comes against the four sides all situated around them that they play throughout December. Anything other than at least three wins from those four games will leave the Hampshire side in real trouble heading into the new year.
Indeed, obtaining nine points from a possible 15 during the club’s upcoming five games would be a real boost given current circumstances.
At least Saints have the goalscoring prowess of Danny Ings to rely on upfront, too. The 27-year-old notched his 7th goal of the campaign against Everton on Saturday and is providing a glimmer of hope for the St Mary’s faithful. Now, he just needs to remain fit for the rest of the campaign.
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