Ralph Hasenhuttl makes honest Conor Gallagher admission ahead of Crystal Palace vs Southampton



Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl has been speaking to the press about the form of Crystal Palace’s Conor Gallagher ahead of Wednesday night’s Premier League match between his side and the Eagles.

The Saints have had an indifferent season so far and head to Selhurst Park without a win since their 1-0 defeat of Aston Villa in early November.

Scoring goals has so far been a problem for Hasenhuttl’s side, with their return of 14 after 16 matches one of the lowest returns in the division this season.

Palace meanwhile have not had to worry so much about where their goals will come from, especially thanks to the form of midfielder Gallagher.

The Chelsea loanee has been by far the best performer under Patrick Vieira this season and is top of the Eagles’ scoring charts for the term with six goals so far.

Hasenhuttl was asked about Gallagher’s form in his pre-match press conference on Monday and said the Saints would need to be wary of the eye-catching midfielder.

“He is doing fantastic and he is a very important part of this team [Palace],” said the 54-year-old. “I must say they have a good team with good quality.

“We have had some good games with them, some good for us, some good for them. I think it is a very tight fixture and we have to go there with a belief in what we are doing to make it as difficult as possible for them to create something.”

Gallagher’s form this season has hit some people by surprise, with the 21-year-old not previously showing the same kind of return in front of goal during his last loan spell in the Premier League with West Bromwich Albion.

Over the summer he was tipped with a move to Leeds United on loan but instead made the late decision to swap Elland Road for Selhurst Park and remain in the capital.

Hasenhuttl was asked whether Gallagher had popped up on Southampton’s radar over the summer while they were identifying players to bring in.

“We had a lot of players on our list, I am not so sure if he was on this list,” he said. “The fact is that he has had a good impact on this team and shown that he is a good player.”

The Austrian coach also revealed the latest injury news surrounding his side, with the team potentially missing up to three forwards for tomorrow’s game.

Armando Broja and Adam Armstrong have both been declared doubts for the game and will face late fitness tests, while Che Adams has been ruled out entirely as he recovers from a muscle injury.





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