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Saints will benefit from England call-ups - boss Puel

James Ward-Prowse received his first senior call-up Credit: PA

Claude Puel has urged Southampton's new England internationals not to change the approach that earned them their senior debuts, and believes his club can benefit from the experience they will gain.

The manager recently watched Nathan Redmond and James Ward-Prowse make their first Three Lions appearances, against Germany, and in the same squad in which Ryan Bertrand and Fraser Forster have long featured.

He is happy two of his finest players' progress is being recognised by Gareth Southgate. He is also confident that it will further encourage their development, as long as they maintain the dedication that led to their first caps.

I didn't want to give them pressure.

It's important they keep a good attitude. The will to make progress every time, and to improve, is the most important thing.

They are the same (in training since representing England). And I want them to stay with the same attitude, and humility.

For example, Ward-Prowse stays at the end of the training sessions to continue to work, he doesn't change anything. It's the same for Nathan.

It was important to perform and to continue this work. It was an opportunity for them, it was a fantastic thing for them, but they now come back to work, with good results.

For the young players it was very interesting for them to see the national team, and important for the club also, because all this is a good response for their work at this club for many years.

It was a good reward to see Nathan and James on the national team.

This is great for the team and we need to continue that.

It's great, fantastic for the club, for them and all this we've done with a good feeling and focus about the Premier League and all the games.

– Claude Puel


Southampton's England duo pranked by boss Puel

James Ward-Prowse has been called up to the senior England squad Credit: PA

James Ward-Prowse and Nathan Redmond thought they were in trouble when Southampton boss Claude Puel hauled them into his office.

But the Southampton duo were delighted when they left after their manager told them they had been named in the England squad.

Midfielder Ward-Prowse and winger-turned-striker Redmond were two of England boss Gareth Southgate's surprise choices for the forthcoming internationals against Germany and Lithuania.

And Puel could not resist teasing the uncapped pair before giving them the good news.

I told them I had a problem with their attitude in the training session, and to ask their opinion.

Then after I told them the news I said I couldn't understand why.

But of course it's fantastic for them and for the club. It's a good thing for them and congratulations to them and to the club.

All the staff who train them have been important for their progress and it's a good reward for all.

The policy in this club for a lot of seasons has been to work with quality, for the promotion and evolution of young players, and it's important we continue.

You can see with James, I looked at the interview when he was young, it was the same spirit - I think James is the ideal son-in-law!

He's an intelligent player, he wants to make progress. It's easy to train James.

For Nathan, he's also a talented player, but sometimes he didn't listen enough. But he has made progress since the beginning of the season.

It's important he understands he has all the quality to become a very good striker with his feet and his quality. He can score all the goals and give good assists.

It's a good reward for them and their work.

– Claude Puel


Caceres could make Southampton bow in EFL Cup Final

Caceres could play in the EFL final

Martin Caceres could be set for a dream Southampton debut in the EFL Cup final against Manchester United.

The 29-year-old defender was signed as a free agent two weeks ago, having been without a club since leaving Italian champions Juventus at the end of last season.

Saints manager Claude Puel moved for Caceres after losing Virgil van Dijk to a long-term ankle injury and captain Jose Fonte, who moved to West Ham last month.

There were concerns over the Uruguay international's fitness, given that he has not played since last February after undergoing surgery on a torn Achilles tendon.

But Puel monitored Caceres on Southampton's recent training camp in Spain and is now considering including him in the squad at Wembley on Sunday.

"I was surprised by his good physical fitness, because he can come on the training camp with a good level, good quality," said Puel.

"He worked hard on his fitness during his injury, and I don't know if he can participate at the beginning of this game but he can give good opportunities and solutions."

Southampton sign Martin Caceres on short-term deal

The former Juventus man has joined until the end of the season. Credit: PA

Southampton have bolstered their defence with the signing of former Juventus centre-back Martin Caceres until the end of the season.

The Uruguay international has been without a club since leaving Italian champions Juve at the end of last term and joins a Saints side who were lacking cover at the back.

Virgil van Dijk's long-term ankle injury compounded the January exit of captain Jose Fonte but the signing of Caceres provides some much-needed experience for boss Claude Puel.

The 29-year-old reportedly turned down interest from AC Milan and Crystal Palace and insists a move to the English south coast was the right choice.

Speaking to the club's official website, Caceres said: "I am very happy to have signed for what is an important club in English football. I am looking forward to getting started with my new team-mates.

"Of all of the options that I had, I think that the best option for me was to come to Southampton. I am extremely happy to have joined this club."

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