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Southampton boss Claude Puel challenges Dusan Tadic to maintain good form

Tadic has had plenty to say about Puel in the public domain. Now, it's the Frenchman's turn.

West Bromwich Albion v Southampton - Premier League Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images

In March, Dusan Tadic claimed he felt "disrespected" by Southampton boss Claude Puel for his insistence on substituting the Serbian playmaker in a run of games before the international break.

"It’s unbelievable that I was subbed again and we also lost," Tadic said at the time. "You can see statistically that we concede or lose when I’ve been taken off. I don’t think this shows enough respect for me."

Puel spoke out about Tadic in the wake of Saints' 1-0 win away at West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, saying: “I think all the teams know the quality of Dusan. Dusan, like any great player, has to keep this good form regularly. In the first half of the season it was more difficult for him.

“It is important with his quality and character to keep this level of performances. He did well for his international team with a very good performance and now he tries to make the same thing with us.

"Dusan can do a very good second part of the season. His first part was difficult, it was slow but he came back with spirit and his qualities for the team. He makes the play simple and gives a good assist.”

[H/T The Daily Star]

As Puel alluded to, Tadic is on track with the pass which set up midfielder Jordy Clasie's stunning winner to give Saints all three points—the Serb's seventh assist of the 2016/17 Premier League campaign.

Awe-inspiring and infuriatingly-frustrating in equal measure, Tadic could well live up to the end of his bargain—only Cesc Fabregas, Mesut Ozil and Christian Eriksen have more assists than the Saints winger over the course of the last three Premier League seasons.