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Jose Fonte bemoans international fatigue

The Southampton captain believes the international break is to blame for Saints' sluggish second half on Saturday.

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Southampton captain and Portuguese international Jose Fonte believes the international break is to blame for his team's poor second half which saw them give up a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2 against Leicester. <!-- ######## START FLOATED VIDEO SNIPPET ######## -->

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Having controlled the first half, Southampton earned the two goal advantage through defensive pairing Fonte and Virgil van Dijk.

However, Leicester are known for their second-half assault and that paid dividends as they bombarded a fragile Saints midfield and defensive unit.

Ronald Koeman's men certainly didn't match the intensity of their Midlands opponents, and Fonte believes Southampton's players who were on their travels for their respective countries the week previous is the main reason for the collapse.

Fonte, who signed a new contract with the club until 2018 on Friday said:"We controlled the game in the first half. But, we were against a team that never gives up. We knew about that, before the game we were talking about it.

"In the second half, we weren't fresh. We dropped our intensity. We stopped pressing them. We allowed them to have the ball too much. We didn't hold the ball up front.

"And that invites pressure. It looked like a question of time when they were going to score, because it was ball after ball after ball, too much defending. When that happens, you run the risk of conceding goals and that is what happened.

"We had a lot of people away on international duty. They came back tired. You could see we were tired. Leicester don't have as many players (as us) in the national teams and it showed.

"We weren't fresh enough after 55 minutes. It's hard when you go away (on international duty) but we will talk about what we can do."

In September, Leicester twice came from behind with a two-goal deficit against Stoke City to draw 2-2 and versus Aston Villa to win 3-2 so the Foxes certainly have previous.

Saints manager Koeman last week revealed his wariness of the distances his players have to travel for their countries - Sadio Mane and Maya Yoshida in particular.

However, while Leicester don't have as many players as we do on international duty, sloppy individual errors are what ultimately cost the team all three points - no matter how badly the team as a whole played in the second portion of the match.