Ronald Koeman: 'Stoke City were very strong'

Feyenoord Manager, Ronald Koeman thanks the fans after victory in the Eredivisie match between Feyenoord and VVV Venlo at De Kuip on April 5, 2013
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Southampton manager Ronald Koeman praises his side's victory over a "very strong" Stoke City side in this afternoon's Premier League clash at St Mary's.

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman has hailed his side's victory over a "very strong" Stoke City side in this afternoon's Premier League clash at St Mary's.

Sadio Mane's strike in the 33rd minute proved crucial as the Saints recorded a 1-0 win over the Potters, a result that puts the South Coast outfit second in the table.

Koeman told BBC Sport: "It was a difficult game. If you don't kill the game then it is always difficult until the last second.

"I think we played a very good first half. It was more difficult in the second half. Stoke changed their system and we didn't control like we had before. But we still had eight opportunities to score.

"You can't win every week so easy. Sometimes it is more difficult because Stoke were very strong. But it is a great win."

Southampton's next game is against the same opposition as today, the South Coast side taking on Stoke City in the League Cup at the Britannia Stadium on Wednesday.

Dusan Tadic and Graziano Pelle of Southampton celebrate during the Barclays Premier League match between Southampton and Sunderland at St Mary's Stadium on October 18, 2014
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