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Harvey Barnes admits improvement was needed to beat Southampton

Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer
·3-min read

Harvey Barnes was pleased on an individual and collective level after taking his goal tally to double figures in Leicester’s fighting victory against Southampton.

Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men started sharply and flustered the Foxes on Saturday evening, only for James Maddison to score an excellent goal late in the first half.

Leicester looked more dangerous than the absentee-hit Saints to score in a helter-skelter second period, which ended with Barnes wrapping up a 2-0 victory in stoppage time.

“I think it panned out the way we thought it would,” the one-cap England international said. “It was a difficult game.

“We were happy to go in at half-time ahead, but we weren’t particularly happy with our performance.

“We thought we were a bit off the pace, but I thought in the second half, we were a lot better.

“We controlled the game a lot better and of course, we’re really happy with the three points.”

England manager Gareth Southgate was in the stands at the King Power Stadium, where ever-improving Barnes kept his cool to score his 10th goal of the season in all competitions.

“In games, it happens, and the game stretches out,” the academy graduate told LCFC TV.

“There’s always space late on, especially when they’re searching for a late goal, so of course, when you break, you just need to keep your composure and I’m happy to see that one go in.

“As a team, we’re scoring a lot of goals this year, and I think I’ve been a big part of that. I think I’m just a bit more composed in front of goal this year, and of course, that’s showing in the goal tally.

“The way we play, we’re so attacking, and that suits me perfectly. All our frontmen go into the game thinking they’re going to score or get an assist.

“There will be a lot of chances for us, so of course, every game is exciting.”

Southampton boss Hasenhuttl expressed pride about his injury-hit side’s performance in the East Midlands given so many key players were absent.

Saints made life uncomfortable for Leicester throughout Saturday’s match and Kyle Walker-Peters was frustrated to have nothing to show for their endeavours.

“Disappointed,” the right-back said. “We’re always disappointed to lose.

“I think we started the game on top. Unfortunate not to take one of those chances, for not taking those chances we got punished.

“Away from home you always want to try and get the first goal and unsettle the home team. Unfortunately we weren’t able to do that and we paid the price.

“I feel like we tried everything, today just wasn’t our day. Stu (Armstrong) hits the bar, on another day it goes in the top corner.

“We always say you don’t lose you learn, we try and keep that as part of the mentality of the team.

“We’ll look back at the game, see where we went wrong and put it right for the next game.”