Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl hopes a united home front can help keep the club in the Premier League.
The Saints host rock-bottom Watford looking to build on last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Arsenal – which could have been more but for Alexandre Lacazette’s stoppage-time equaliser.
St Mary’s Stadium, though, has not proven a happy hunting ground this season, with no wins and five defeats – including a 9-0 thrashing by Leicester.
Hasenhuttl feels if the team can get off to a positive start and give the crowd something to cheer about, then everyone can start to move forwards.
“The crazy thing at the moment is that in the away games we score very soon always and at home we have the opposite experience. It is really strange, but we have to turn the table now,” the Southampton boss said.
“At home, it was very often that we were (a goal) down immediately and that creates an atmosphere in the stadium that isn’t helpful for anybody – the fans or for us.
“This is what we have to change now, having a better start at home. We speak a lot about this, but it’s more important to do it at the weekend.”
Hasenhuttl added at a press conference: “If you create the first two or three chances, the crowd is there and they will help you.
“If we lose the ball in our own half and the opponent has two chances and scores once, then it is not a surprise that the atmosphere turns.
“It is about us to put a positive atmosphere back in our stadium and this is the message we must give to the fans.
“We need their help in some moments and to be positive with us even if we make a mistake. When both things happen, we have a bigger chance to have a better atmosphere.”
Watford found themselves back bottom of the table following a 3-0 home defeat by Burnley on Saturday, which was their seventh league loss this season.
The Hornets, though, would move off the bottom and be replaced by Southampton if they pull off another away win to add to the victory at fellow strugglers Norwich before the international break.
“They are still a fantastic team with a few good players,” Hasenhuttl said. “They changed their shape a little bit and (Troy) Deeney comes back in which gives them another option. He is someone they have been missing.
“I think this is still a team that is not easy to beat, but we play at home now and we must focus on our game. If we do that, then it is not so interesting who is on the other side.”
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