Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl believes he’s already proven he can go head-to-head with the Premier League’s big guns.
Since replacing the fired Mark Hughes in December, Hasenhuttl has won four of his 13 games in charge at Southampton and will be chasing number five at Arsenal on Sunday.
The former RB Leipzig coach famously grabbed his first victory for Southampton against Arsenal at St Mary’s and, in the process, ended the Gunners’ 22-match unbeaten run.
The Saints also held Chelsea to a 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge last month and, therefore, Hasenhuttl sees no reason why he should fear Arsenal or any other top team in the Premier League.
“We are focusing on the game against a difficult opponent, a very good opponent that we beat once already this year in a big game with a fantastic performance,” said Hasenhuttl, according to Sky Sports.
“I’m not afraid about all the big teams because we showed against Chelsea and Arsenal that we can also play against these teams in good matches and we will need to, that’s for sure.
“Every game is difficult but I think in the first game we showed that we can bring this surprising result.”
Despite the strong results against the big teams, however, Southampton have fallen back into the relegation zone upon failing to win their last three games.
“To take something in the Emirates Stadium is far away from being easy but we don’t think about that,” said Hassenhuttl.
“We know that we can be an opponent in an away game that’s not easy to beat, and that’s the only thing that interests us.
“That we can be a strong opponent, that we can take another clean sheet in London, like we did against Chelsea.”
The Southampton and Arsenal game will take place at the Emirates Stadium with kick-off set for 3:05 PM (CET).
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) February 23, 2019