Shane Long says he is loving life at Hull City after a blistering start to his career at the Tigers.
The Tipperary man, signed from West Brom in the transfer window took his goal tally to two goals in three games with his strike against Sunderland at the weekend and he was pleased that the Tigers’ performance got the three points it deserved.
“I’m delighted to get two goals out of three games,” Long told the Hull City website.
“I thought we played well against Tottenham the previous week and deserved more than a draw out of the game and it was the same at Crystal Palace. It was nice to play well on Saturday and come away with three points. That makes a big difference and hopefully we can kick on from here.”
There’s a long way to go and a lot of hard work to put in, but this is a step in the right direction.”
Long played a crucial role in the victory at the Stadium of Light.
Black Cats defender Wes Brown was dismissed for upending the Irish international and shortly after, Long scored the opener in Hull’s 2-0 win.
“Sometimes when the opposition go down to 10 men it can make it a bit harder because they sit in more but the boys did really well. Getting the goal so soon after they had the man sent off made it that little bit easier for us and it was a good performance.
“We kept the ball really well in the final 20 minutes and it was enjoyable.”
Tonight Hull host a Southampton side who appear to have steadied the ship after a poor run.
Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino believes the way his squad responded to the departure of record signing Dani Osvaldo shows they have a “great future” — and is already thinking about his own plans at the Premier League club for next season.
Bought from Roma in the summer for some £15 million (18m), Italian forward Osvaldo managed just three goals in 13 appearances and following a training-ground bust-up with defender Jose Fonte was shipped out to Juventus on loan, with a view to a permanent move.
Pochettino feels the way the team responded in recent weeks — which also followed the high-profile departure of chairman Nicola Cortese — with an unbeaten run of seven games in all competitions, shows their true character.
“This team has always had a very strong mentality and any departure from this club is going to affect people in a personal manner, but professionally the team puts in very good performances, takes on a lot of responsibility and puts in a lot of effort,” Pochettino said.
“The work rate is always amazing with these players and with all of these players, this club has a great future.”
Argentinian Pochettino has himself been linked with a move away from St Mary’s Stadium, but indicated he was in it for the long haul with he Saints.
He said: “I dont really listen to these kind of rumours.
“They flatter the club and flatter the players that make up this club.
“Nearly all of our players have been linked with other clubs, which flatters the philosophy which is in place at this club.”
Pochettino added: “On a personal matter, I am very calm on my future and am already thinking ahead on planning ahead for next season.”
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