Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Pochettino praise for Rodriguez

Jay Rodriguez has scored in his last three games

Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino believes the sky is the limit for in-form Jay Rodriguez.

The 23-year-old joined Saints from Burnley last summer for what was at the time a club-record £6million fee. After struggling to make an immediate impact at St Mary's, Rodriguez has been given a new lease of life since the January arrival of Pochettino.

Goals in each of the last three games have repaid the Argentinian's faith and helped Saints secure wins over Liverpool, Chelsea and Reading on Saturday. Rodriguez opened the scoring at the Madejski Stadium and then provided the assist for Adam Lallana to make it 2-0. "I think footballers adapt better or worse to certain ways of playing football," Pochettino said.

"He is a player that ever since I arrived has been really confident and playing basically all the games.

"I am just really happy with him and all my players because they showed a great capacity to adapt to this new brand of football I want to play. He is a player that has a great dynamism, great technical quality.

"He is obsessed by football, lives for football, has a great mentality and is always available. The sky is the limit for him. I don't see a roof - there is no limit."

Those sentiments were echoed by captain Lallana, who added: "There's no limit to where he can go. I train with him every day and he's a top, top lad.

"He's got his feet on the ground, great attitude and work ethic and it's a pleasure to play with him and have him at Southampton Football Club."

Much like Rodriguez, things are now looking up for Southampton - so much so that talk of a relegation battle has quickly turned to a potential top-10 finish.

"We've been playing well and it's a target that we have as well," Lallana added. "If we keep performing well and winning we can look up towards the top half of the table."

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