However, Saints continue to earn plaudits for their performances and you can count City boss Pep Guardiola as one of the club’s admirers in the Premier League.
Guardiola, who is already seen as a managerial great by many after his championship-filled stints at Barcelona and Bayern Munich, hailed Hasenhuttl’s Southampton and also claimed Saints captain James War-Prowse as the best set-piece taker he has ever seen.
“I must say how impressed I was with Southampton and there is a reason they are where they are,” Guardiola said after his City side defeated Saints. [H/T HampshireLive] “We know which team we faced. How good they are. They are so, so good and then run behind, fantastic and such an important win for us.
“You can see the quality with their build-up, the four guys in the middle, the two central defenders and they put a lot of fast players into the high pressing and they play really good.
“We come from an uncomfortable situation, but it is good to get the three points. We created chances, but we have to survive being solid and put our desire and heart to do the rest.
“They [Southampton] put a lot of players inside; they provoke you to be narrow. It’s difficult. They don’t allow you to be compact, that’s why they are so good. That’s why they’re creating problems.
“They have the best free-kick taker I have seen in my life in [James] Ward-Prowse. Their position in the table, Ralph [Hasenhuttl] is doing an excellent job.”