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Morgan Schneiderlin repaying Southampton faith

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Morgan Schneiderlin showed critics why Southampton wanted him to stay with a supreme midfield performance, capped with a beautiful last-minute goal following a great team move.

Mike Hewitt

Dejan Lovren. Adam Lallana. Luke Shaw. Rickie Lambert. Calum Chambers. Southampton let all of these players go and they have had some mixed results since moving away from the south coast.

But, Southampton dug their heels in for one player this summer; spurning any chance of them becoming another Saints star to defect to the more alluring clubs of the Premier League. His name is Morgan Schneiderlin.

Upon Saints chairman Ralph Krueger's public refusal to let the French international leave the club, Schneiderlin was pretty vocal in his disappointment at not being able to leave the club which had developed him since an unknown 18-year-old.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>6 years of an amazing journey <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/saintsfc?src=hash">#saintsfc</a> DESTROYED in 1 hour !!!</p>&mdash; Morgan Schneiderlin (@SchneiderlinMo4) <a href="https://twitter.com/SchneiderlinMo4/status/494177493155606528">July 29, 2014</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Upon this public display of desire to leave the club, a lot of Southampton fans were wondering if it was worth keeping a want-away player in a side that had already suffered so many losses in the previous weeks.

Meanwhile, football pundits were criticising the club for finally growing a backbone and not giving into player demands - after previously mocking the club for not doing so. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

Schneiderlin then missed out on Saints' final pre-season friendly against Bayer Leverkusen, with manager Ronald Koeman citing the Frenchman as "not being the right state of mind" to feature for the club.

A week later, Schneiderlin played a starring role in Southampton's spirited loss against Liverpool, dominating the midfield and going close with a last minute equaliser, if not for the fingertips of Reds 'keeper Simon Mignolet.

Since then he has went from strength-to-strength. A supreme performance versus West Ham, complete with a brace of goals, caught the eye - signalling his desire to work hard for Southampton; even if it is a stop-gap before an inevitable move away from Hampshire.

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Then there was Saturday's match versus Newcastle. Much was expected of Morgan and Saints after their crushing 3-1 victory over the Hammers and they certainly didn't disappoint.

Schneiderlin ran every aspect of this 4-0 demolition from midfield and his performance was capped off with a stunning curling effort, following on from a team move which saw a total of 41 uninterrupted Southampton passes before the ball nestling in Tim Krul's net. This goal encapsulated the way Saints have been playing over the last few years.

Here is the link to Southampton's sumptuous fourth goal.

While there are still some skeptics out there - myself included, Morgan has quickly regained the trust and adulation from Southampton's vocal contingent of supporters.

With Schneiderlin's form the way it is, compared to the likes of Lovren and Lallana, it's no wonder why the Saints hierarchy wanted the talented Frenchman to stay.