Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl speaks after his side beat Norwich City

Oriol Romeu(L) of Southampton is congratulated by Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhüttl during the Premier League match between Southampton and Norwich City at St Mary's Stadium on February 25, 2022 in Southampton, England.

Ralph Hasenhuttl labelled Saints’ victory over Norwich a “tough win” despite the stats suggesting otherwise.

Akin to their comfortable win over Everton last Saturday, Saints controlled the game without having to exert much effort onto their opponents, eventually coming out 2-0 winners.

Che Adams bundled the ball home to give Saints a first-half lead, before Oriol Romeu’s thunderbolt from outside the box in the final minutes sealed back-to-back wins.

Coming into the game Saints were expected to win due to the differing form and league positions of the two sides, but boss Hasenhuttl believes that expectations could have caused Saints to become complacent.

The Austrian said: I’m happy, absolutely we knew that these are the toughest wins because everyone expects it.

Against teams that are super organised and fighting for everything, the way we managed the game today was an impressive one I think.

It was in the first-half a very good performance also.

We definitely dominated them, it was with the ball better than in the second-half top be honest, we were missing the precision.

Saints more than tripled Norwich’s attempted efforts, recording 27 shots to the Canaries’ eight.

In fact, Saints managed more on target shots that their guests attempted shot in total – with nine strikes finding the target.

The possession stat also highlighted the control Saints had on the evening, with the hosts enjoying 59%.

Despite the stats indicating a controlling performance, Hasenhuttl stated that he didn’t feel as comfortable as the statistics suggested.

He continued I have seen 2.9 expected goals to 0.4, it didn’t feel that dominant or that clear but we could score definitely.

In the end it needed a set-piece and a fantastic shot from Ori to calm the game down. Finally, I think it was a good game.

Saints rise up to ninth in the league table by virtue of playing on the Friday. Brighton, who slip down into 10th, have the opportunity to leapfrog Saints when they host Aston Villa on Saturday.

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