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Saints boss Jones says he has 'let players down'

Published on: 04 February 2023

Southampton manager Nathan Jones said he has "let his players down" after their 3-0 defeat at Brentford, and got "carried away" because they are in the Premier League.

Saints are bottom of the table, three points from safety.

They have lost eight of their 13 matches since Jones was appointed in November.

"I want to be brutally honest with this, I have let the players down," Jones told BBC Match of the Day.

"I was recruited to do certain things and I don't see my team in there. I have pandered a little bit, I have gone away and tried to accommodate what we have.

"I haven't really put my own stamp on it and I should have by now, I really should have."

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Jones led Luton to last season's Championship play-offs, where they were beaten by Huddersfield Town in the semi-finals.

He took over at Kenilworth Road with the Hatters struggling in League Two, guiding them to second in League One when he left for an ill-fated spell with Stoke City in 2019.

After winning just six of his 38 matches at Stoke he returned to a Luton side 23rd in the Championship, helping them stay up on the final day of the 2019-20 season.

Southampton face relegation rivals Wolves in the Premier League next Saturday

"I was recruited to do a certain job, to play in a certain way because my teams did really well," Jones added. "We defended the box, we were aggressive, front-footed, we put teams under pressure, we pressed, we counter-pressed really well.

"I blame myself. I should be driving the standards. Everywhere I've been I've drove standards, I haven't let anyone get away with anything. I've been on top of everyone.

"I've maybe got carried away that these are Premier League players and you have to give them this and that, but no more."

Southampton have conceded 53 goals in their past 27 Premier League matches, keeping just one clean sheet in that time, and they were repeatedly carved open by Brentford on Saturday.

Chants of "you're getting sacked in the morning" and "Nathan Jones, get out of our club" were heard from away supporters at the Gtech Community Stadium.

Rooted to the bottom of the Premier League, Saints hope to improve on a run that has brought four defeats in their past five games.

Jones was named Championship Manager of the Year last season

"The manager drives standards. I took plenty of accolades at my previous clubs and manager of the year and statistically one of the best in the country and one of the most aggressive managers," continued Jones.

"On an absolute shoestring, by the way. Pound-for-pound there wasn't anyone else in the country competing like we did in terms of points-per-pound.

"I've tried to give people what they want, I've tried to really work with the players to give them a system that suits them.

"But it doesn't suit me. It hasn't suited me as a manager or why I was recruited to come here."

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