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Steven Davis hails “vital” Graziano Pelle

Steven Davis has praised the contribution that Graziano Pelle makes to the Saints team.

Alex Broadway/Getty Images

Steven Davis has hailed Graziano Pelle’s performances after the two helped Saints to a 2-0 win over neighbours AFC Bournemouth.

Davis opened the scoring in the 31st minute, capping off a well worked team goal with a neat volley. The Saints doubled their lead five minutes later through Pelle, who has now scored nine times for the club this season, and Davis was full of praise for the Italian international.

"I think he plays a vital role," the Northern Ireland international said.

"I think everybody knows we like to try and play football, but he also gives us that outlet if we want to go a little bit more direct and he can cause teams a lot of problems.

"We can play off him and he’s probably one of the best in the league in terms of doing that, so he’s been magnificent for us.

"Obviously, the goals that he’s scored as well, you can see he’s playing full of confidence."

It’s not just Pelle who is in good goal scoring form, though. After not finding the back of the net for the entire season last campaign, Davis now has four goals in seven games for club and country.

"I think I just always try to get into the positions, but it was a great team goal," said Davis.

"The first one I think the boys worked it really well and it was a great ball in from Berty (Ryan Bertrand) and nice to get on the end of it, but I just have to keep on trying to get into those positions and hopefully get a few more between now and the end of the season.

"It’s nice to see the ball hitting the back of the net."

The victory against Bournemouth saw Ronald Koeman’s side move to seventh in the Premier League table.