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Saints facing test of character - Ward-Prowse
James Ward-Prowse admits that Saints are missing the winning feeling, but he is certain the players possess the mental strength to overcome the adversity they are currently facing.
The 3-2 defeat at home to Tottenham means it is now six games without a victory in the league for Mauricio Pochettino’s side.
Many expected that Saints would take advantage of the recent turmoil at White Hart Lane, where manager Andre Villas-Boas has been dismissed and replaced by caretaker Tim Sherwood, but Ward-Prowse said the team knew Spurs were going to provide a challenging test.
“We’re disappointed to lose again,” said the 19-year-old. “I think we’re all missing the winning feeling.
“I think we were just beaten by a good Tottenham Hotspur side, who were obviously galvanised under the new manager.
“We knew before the game it would be difficult. Obviously, they’re trying to prove a point to the new manager and I think they did that.”
Saints have not won since the 4-1 demolition of Hull, at St Mary’s, in early November.
That run has seen them drop from a top-four position in the table down to ninth.
Ward-Prowse insists the players are confident they will turn their form around quickly, though.
“These sorts of things happen during the season, but it’s a test of character for us, and I know among us we’re mentally strong enough to get through that,” he said.
Saints will have a chance to respond to their latest setback when they visit Cardiff, another team who have been experiencing great uncertainty at the managerial position, on Boxing Day.
“As I said before, we’re missing the winning feeling,” reiterated Ward-Prowse.
“We’re going to go there, we’ve got plans to win the game and again it’s maybe a good time to play them, maybe a bad time, but we’re going to hopefully make it into a good time to play them.”
Despite Saints’ poor run, the team has still produced some strong performances.
“We’re playing well and that’s why we’re disappointed, because we’re not getting anything out at the end of it, but it’s a test of character and I’m sure we’ll come through it,” said Ward-Prowse.
Unsurprisingly, Saints’ downturn in results has come at a time when injuries have bitten hard.
Ward-Prowse conceded that the absence of various important players has made it a more challenging period for the club.
He said: “To miss a few key players, like Artur and Victor, it is difficult. They’re the core of the team.
“But that’s where others have got to step up and prove a point.”
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