Ralph Hasenhüttl has admitted that, despite only being there briefly, he was well aware of the significance to the whole Club in reaching the top of the Premier League.
Ahead of the latest international break, goals from Ché Adams and Stuart Armstrong had given Saints a 2-0 win over Newcastle.
At that time, it was enough to lift Hasenhüttl's side to the summit of England's Premier division, before Leicester, Tottenham and Liverpool eventually surpassed them.
Speaking ahead of the Wolves game, which sees Saints currently sat in a more than healthy 4th position, the Austrian confirmed that, having reflected in the peace and quiet of his own home, he knew it would reiterate to everyone at the Club that progress is being made.
Talking to Total Saints, Hasenhüttl said, "if you want to change things in the long term you need short term success and this is why such moments are always important, because that grows the belief in what we are doing and grows the belief in the whole Club in what we are doing.
"When you see now the Under-23s, we change completely with the behaviour of how they play and when you see that these young lads they were at first, sure, a little bit, not 100% convinced about what we are doing, it is a very different way of defending, this pressing and this forward into defending, then it is always good if you have such a statement 'ok, top of the league cannot be that bad when you do it', so that has convinced them much more."
The Austrian added, "this is the reason why you sit down at home and think ‘yes, this is now a good moment for another next step forward for changing a few things in the Club’ and its definitely a very interesting period we are in at the moment. Everybody wants to be part of it and such results and such situations definitely help more as if you are on the bottom of the table because the arguments are not that convincing, I think.”
During his managerial career, Hasenhüttl has won league titles and, with former side RB Leipzig, been top of the Bundesliga on several occasions.
This was nothing new for him.
However, in terms of the positive development Saints are wanting to make over the coming months and years - on and off the pitch - its clear he realises just how important that win was in maintaining complete confidence of the Club's longer-term strategy.
Article by Ben Stanfield
(21/11/2020) (Photo by Southampton Football Club)