When the saints go marching in

When the saints go marching in

Three years ago, an English Premier League trip to Old Trafford was the stuff of fairytales for Southampton. Back then, they were 17th in League One.

Two divisions later, the Saints are no longer dreaming. They are delivering.

Mauricio Pochettino speaks of getting something from the game at Manchester United tonight and no one giggles.

That's the mark of Southampton's meteoric progress.

If David Moyes isn't apprehensive about the Saints marching down the new Sir Alex Ferguson Way, then he should be. Here are five reasons why.

1 Pochettino bans pessimism

Dispense with the nationalistic drum-beating. British isn't always best, not when it comes to Premier League managers.

They come with deeply ingrained psychological baggage.

Yes, they understand the historic value of the much-maligned FA Cup and the regional significance of a local derby, but they can also be cursed with outdated values, perceptions and a side's social standing.

A trip to Anfield is written off. An away day at Old Trafford is about damage limitation.

Getting to 40 points is seen as an achievement and staying up is almost reason enough for an open-top bus parade around the city centre.

Call it the "little man" syndrome if you will, but the likes of Sam Allardyce, Ian Holloway and Nigel Adkins all suffer from it.

They pay too much respect to historical form. But Pochettino couldn't care less about the history books.

The Spaniard didn't turn up to continue the endless drudgery of the relegation cycle.

Pochettino wants to generate a culture of winning, not excuses.

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