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Monday 18 December 2017

Saints take mid season break ahead of run-in

Southampton's James Ward-Prowse arrives before the Barclays Premier League match at The Hawthorns, West Bromwich
Southampton's James Ward-Prowse arrives before the Barclays Premier League match at The Hawthorns, West Bromwich

Southampton have jetted off to Switzerland for a break ahead of what James Ward-Prowse believes are the 10 biggest matches in the club's history.

Saints' late, and somewhat fortuitous, victory against Crystal Palace on Tuesday evening got them back to winning way after their remarkable season started to go off kilter.

The latest in a line of disjointed displays looked set to cost Ronald Koeman's men, only for Sadio Mane to strike late on to secure a 1-0 win which moved them back to within a point of the top-four.

It means Champions League qualification remains a realistic - and scarcely-believable - prospect for Saints, whose players flew to Switzerland on Wednesday for a break ahead of what Ward-Prowse knows is a crunch period.

"I think it will be great to just have a good time, the pressure of the Premier League is massive, especially where we are in the table," the midfielder said.

"It's good to get away, put our feet up and have a bit of a laugh with the group. It should be a good bit of fun and then we'll move on from there

"These next 10 games are probably the biggest in the club's history and we're determined as a group of players to make history for the club.

"We want to get us to the biggest stage in the world where we feel we belong with the best teams and best players in the world."

Next up for Southampton is the unenviable task of a trip to Chelsea on March 15.

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